Ho'okele Staff | Feb 10, 2017
Story and photo by Randy Dela Cruz
Sports Editor, Ho‘okele
All knotted up at 49-49 with 2.8 seconds remaining in the game, 1st Lt. Alexis Lee pounded the ball inside the hoop on a putback as the horn sounded to give the 15th Maintenance Group (15 MXG) a 51-49 victory over the D-Leaguers on Feb. 7 in a 30 Above Division intramural basketball game at Hickam Fitness Center.
The MXG, which enjoyed a double-digit lead for most of the entire second half, watched as an amazing comeback, led by the shooting of guard Tech. Sgt. James Reammerer tied the score to set up the dramatic final shot.
“Coach called the play that they was going to do a back-screen for me,” Lee said about the final shot. “It went exactly how we planned it. I missed the shot, but luckily it came right back to me and I made the lay-up.”
Even though his first shot didn’t fall, Lee said that there was no way he was going to let the game get away.
“It was just years of practice and playing the game,” he said. “It was years of doing it.”
The game, like the end, started off as a nail biter, as both teams took turns at leading the contest.
Tied up three times in the first couple of minutes, the D-Leaguers managed to take the lead two times on some clutch shooting by Tech. Sgt. Jake Monroe.
Late in the first half, the MXG started to pull away, but just before halftime, Maj. Ken Roberts got an open shot from beyond the arc and nailed it to cut the lead down to two points at 21-19, before Tech. Sgt. Miguel Brooks answered the call with a basket of his own as time expired in the first half with the MXG clinging to a tight 23-19 advantage.
The D-Leaguers made a run coming out of intermission and when Reammerer sank a 15-foot jumper minutes into the second half, the team found itself ahead with a 24-23 advantage.
Later, Monroe swished a “j” and was followed up by another three-point shot from Roberts to give the D-Leaguers their biggest lead of the night at 31-26.
However, back came the MXG, as guard Army Master Sgt. Eric Dawson finished off a fast break to tie the score at 31-31 with 14:39 remaining on the clock.
A huge three-point shot by Lee gave the MXG a seemingly insurmountable lead at 43-33 with only 8:18 on the clock, but that’s when Reammerer caught on fire.
As the seconds ticked away, Reammerer’s trey cut the lead down to six points and with only 42:6 seconds remaining in the game, the red-hot guard sank his second trey in a row to cut the lead down to three points.
Finally, Reammerer brought his team all the way back to tie the score with only 18 seconds remaining in the game. He shook off his defender, drib-bled to the left wing and calmly swished his third trey in a row to tie the score at 49-49.
“We broke it down and team-mates trusted in the system we have,” Reammerer said about the team’s improbable comeback. “I got open looks because of my teammates and the ball went in. It works sometime like that.”
Fortunately, the MXG had one final possession to erase the tremendous comeback by the D-Leaguers and they didn’t let it slip away.
“We just trusted our team-mates,” Lee said. “Make the right passes, trust your team-mates and we knew that we was going to have a good shot to win it at the end.”
Lee gave full credit to the D-Leaguers for their incredible comeback, but added that his team will use this game as a lesson on how to wrap things up a bit more quickly.
“He (Reammerer) made some great shots,” Lee said. “Sometimes you’re going to be hot and they were hot. We’ll be better next game. There are a couple of things we can learn from this game.”