On Saturday night, the San Pedro TigerSharks took center stage at the sports complex to host the Belize Bank Bulldogs for the first game in the 2007 semi-pro basketball season. Fans got to see a preview of tough competition to come with a veteran franchise; the Sharks played like true “champs” and posted the big win over the Bull Dogs, 71-66.
Starting line ups for the Sharks were: Kevin Seroki who replaced last year’s Gadsen Ferguson, Stephen “Myuerte” Williams, Doug Penland, Keith “Superman” Acosta and Jamaican American import Damian Staples who made his debut. The Bulldog’s starting line up included: Linsberg Graham, Tyrone “Joka” Edwards, Eden Serano, Judson Stubbs and Kirk “Shabba” Smith.
At tip off, the new look TigerSharks showed much flexibility and made the first baskets to start the game. After a back and forth foot race, the game was a close one most of the time, keeping fans on their toes. But, with the great leadership and quick ball handling skills of Kevin Seroki, point guard, the Sharks were a force to be reckoned with. Unfortunately, at two minutes and 16 seconds left on the second quarter, one of the Bulldogs’ big men Kirk “Shabba” Smith suffered from an injury and cost him the game and possibly the season with a bad knee. At half time, the TigerSharks went into intermission with confidence while holding on to a two point lead 33-31.
Second half the game kicked into higher gear and the fans loved every minute of it. Play by play was classic and nail biting, but both clubs kept their composure. The Sharks’ team chemistry was excellent, great passing all around. The Bulldogs were an intimidating bunch; with their quickness in the backcourt and size in the front court they too kept the game in an “up tempo” mode. One of the highlights was at 8:50 in the fourth quarter Keith got fouled for a three point play and a double digit lead, 55-45. From then on, the Sharks dominated in the paint with fast break points. At the end of regulation, the Tigersharks posted the big W for San Pedro, 71-66.
Leading the pack for the TigerSharks was; Keith Acosta who finished with 12 points, 10 rebounds and four assists. Doug Penland finished with 11 points while Seroki added eight assists. The six foot, nine inch foreign import Damian Staples made well of his debut and finished with six points and six boards. For the Bulldogs, Earl “Bolo” Johnson had 13 pts and 18 rebounds while the foreign player Judson Studds had 12 points and seven rebounds.
Week two of the semi-pro basketball competition continues this weekend: Game one will be held at the Belize City Center between the Belize Bank Bulldogs and Belmopan to tip-off at 9:30 p.m. Then, on Saturday April 21st, TigerSharks will try for a second win against the Corozal Runnin’ Rebels to be played at the Corozal Civic Center to tip off at 9:00 p.m. Viva TigerSharks!!!
This is basketball at its finest and The Sun will keep you posted as the season progresses, stay tuned!