Second half shooting gives Port Royal huge victory

Information Systems Technician 3rd Class Dre Clark breaks away for a lay-up.

Story and photo by Randy Dela Cruz

Sports Editor, Ho‘okele

After finding their range in the second half, USS Port Royal (CG 73) Admirals opened up a 20-point lead en route to a 57-33 rout of USS Jefferson City (SSN 759)/USS Chicago (SSN 771) on Feb. 3 in an Afloat Division seasoning opening intramural basketball game at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.

Up by only four points at halftime, the Admirals slowly built up steam in the second half, before a rain of three-point baskets broke the game wide open with about five minutes remaining on the clock.

Information Systems Technician 3rd Class Dre Clark led the drive to the top by topping all scorers with 21 points, which included five deep shots from beyond the three-point arc.

Teammate Operations Specialist 3rd Class Jocelyn Alvarado also came off the bench to sink three shots from long distance for a total of nine points that were all scored in the second half.

“We’ve been out of the league for a year, so us coming back from deployment, we wanted to let everyone know that we were back on the waterfront,” said Admirals head coach Chief Electrician’s Mate Jermaine Moore. “We just want everyone to know that we’re going to put forth a good effort for this season.”

Four years ago, Port Royal became the first team from the Afloat Division to capture the JBPHH intramural basketball championship and Moore said he is hoping that this year’s squad can do it again.

In the game, both teams came out on fire from the perimeter. Clark and Gas Turbine System Technician (Mechanical) 2nd Class Ariel Malagon swished three treys for Port Royal, while Culinary Specialist (Submarines) 3rd Class William Johnson answered back with two treys of his own to keep the game close.

After falling down by 10 points with 7:09 remaining in the first half, Yeoman 2nd Class Jusuf Jenkins scored seven points for Jefferson City/ Chicago to cut the deficit down to four points at 20-16.

After the break, the game moved along at the same pace for the first five minutes in the second half, but once Port Royal started to get things going, there was no turning back.

A trey by Clark gave the Admirals some breathing room at 25-19, and then with 5:33 remaining in the game, a breakaway lay-up by Malagon put Port Royal up by double digits for the second time in the game at 38-27.

Moore said that once Port Royal settled down and started to play their style of basketball, things just seemed to come together.

“A lot of these guys play together a couple of times per week,” Moore said. “I just told them to calm down, let the game come to them and let it all gel.”

Alvarado, especially, seemed to take Moore’s words to heart, as she immediately calmed down and started to shoot the lights out.

With the team holding an 11-point advantage, Alvarado put the game away with back-to-back treys that gave Port Royal a commanding 44-27 lead with only 4:18 left in the game.

“I just told her (Alvarado) to be aggressive,” Moore said. “She’s a natural shooter and she loves to shoot the ball.”

In the coming weeks, Moore said that he expects more reinforcements to bolster up the Admirals’ roster, which should help the team’s inside game.

Moore said that he is counting on the added strength to fuel a strong run to the Afloat and Joint Base championships.

“W breed champions and I want to keep the tradition going,” Moore said. “This year is definitely a statement year.”

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Category: Sports