Security Forces rally for comeback win in OT

Airman Lorenzo Hawkins takes the ball on a strong drive to the basket.

Story and photo by Randy Dela Cruz

Sports Editor, Ho‘okele

A buzzer-beating putback by Senior Airman Shawn Daley opened the door to a 73-63 overtime win by the 647th Security Forces Squadron (647 SFS) over Naval Sea Systems Command (NSSC) Kraken on Feb. 7 in a battle of undefeated Red Division intramural basketball squads at Hickam Fitness Center, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.

Down by two points with precious seconds ticking off the clock, Airman Lorenzo Hawkins launched a potential game-winning shot from beyond the three-point arc, but watched helplessly as the ball bounced off the back of the rim.

Luckily for the 647 SFS, the ball caromed right into the hands of Daley, who quickly shuffled up the ball with both hands and saw the shot swish through the net to tie the game up at 58-58 and send it into overtime.

“I just knew I had to make the shot,” Daley said about his clutch shot. “We love to win and it’s a great team effort. If my teammate (Hawkins) had to do it again, he probably would have knocked it down. But it came down into my hands and I had to do what I had to do to make it.”

The second life seemed to generate some energy into the 647 SFS, as the team opened the overtime on fire and took over the hard-fought battle.

Senior Airman Terrence Webb quickly gave the 647 SFS the lead on a basket and then Hawkins came back to drain a three-pointer that put his team up by five points at 63-58.

From that point on, the 647 SFS went on to outscore the Kraken 10-5 to put the game away.

The comeback by the 647 SFS seemed improbable late in the game, as the Kraken, behind the play of center and team captain Logistics Specialist 2nd Class Jerry Acosta and guard Yeoman 2nd Class Terrance Day took an eight-point lead at 49-41 with 9:23 remaining in the game.

However, the 647 SFS refused to die and fought back to cut the lead down to a single point at 51-50 on back-to-back free throws by Senior Airman Kendal Young with three minutes left in the game.

Day raised the lead back to three points off a driving lay-up inside the lane, but Young came up with another clutch play with a putback that drew the 647 SFS back to within a point at 55-54.

Then with only 32 seconds on the clock, Acosta seemed to stick the dagger into the backs of the 647, when he calmly took a pass behind the three-point arc and stuck it in the hole for a 58-54 lead.

Instead of folding, the 647 SFS used only nine seconds to score on a lay-up by Daley to pull to within two points, and then the team fouled Acosta to put him on the line in an effort to get the ball back.

With six seconds on the clock, Acosta could have iced the game with two free throws, but needing to sink one free throw to get another, the Kraken big man missed on his first attempt to give the 647 SFS the opportunity they needed to tie the game and send it into overtime.

“That’s just our nature. We’re always fighting,” Daley said about the team’s never-say-die attitude. “We all got big hearts — every one of us. We don’t like to lose and we always try to find a way to win.”

Although the win came early in the season, Daley said that the come-from-behind victory was huge for the 647 SFS — especially in beating a top-tier team such as the Kraken.

Not only does the win keep the 647 SFS’s perfect season in place, Daley also said that it keeps the team in the division’s driver’s seat for the No. 1 seed in the playoffs.

“We love going into the playoffs knowing that we get that first seed,” Daley said. “Last year, we won that first seed and we want to make sure that we finish first in our division.”

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Category: Sports