KALAHEO — Aiko Grande’s desperation three-point attempt with just seconds remaining in the game fell just short for Team 808, Monday at the Kalaheo Neighborhood Center.
The bomb from outside the three-point arc was supposed to settle the teeter-totter of the match between Team 808 and a tenacious Shakers squad in the Women 18 and Over Summer Youth Basketball league.
But the shot clanged off the rim and the buzzer sounded on Team 808’s second loss of the summer.
The Shakers, with the 48-46 nail-biting win, improved to 5-3 on the season and picked up the third seed for the playoffs which start Monday at the Kalaheo Neighborhood Center.
Natalie Mata, coming off a weekend tour on O‘ahu with the Kaulupono squad she and Kori Sakamoto of Team 808 coaches, fired off 20 points to lead BAM to a 58-29 win over Bajingas and the top seed of the Women 18 and Over division.
Team 808 relied on its treys to keep pace with the Shakers, Janessa Grady, the go-to guard who stepped up without a word when Casey Anacleto was shaken up on a second-half play, firing off three of the team’s seven three-balls.
Grady finished the night with 14 points to lead the Team 808 effort followed by Anacleto, getting her share of bangs and bruises on the floor, lending eight points, including two three-balls, the first coming in the opening stanza and helping pull Team 808 back into the fray.
Grande added six points, including one second-quarter trey. Kelsey Cadiente, Sakamoto, getting a third quarter trey, Arrisa Thronas and Paige Connelly, effectively contained by the Shakers’ height of Farren Higley and Noe Perreira, all added four points.
Ana Jacinto, getting two of the Shakers’ three treys, topped the win on nine points and a lot of hustle on the floor. Higley and player/coach Robyn Ho‘opi‘i-Manuel each added eight points followed by Perreira at seven points including numerous rebounds. Guard Ashley Mier, carding the team’s third trey, also added seven points, effectively moving the ball against Team 808 in the final period to preserve its lead.
Janna Soto added five points and pairs from Kehau Regidor and Reesha Banasihan.
Following Mata’s lead in the BAM win, Carie and Elisa Inouye each added 11 points.
Jessica Soriano topped the Bajingas’ scoring on seven points with guards Nikki Banasihan and Cheyenne Duarte adding five points apiece.
Team 808 (6-2) faces the Shakers (5-3) in a re-match when the playoffs hosted by the Kaua‘i Youth Basketball and the County of Kaua‘i opens at 6 p.m., July 25 at the Kalaheo Neighborhood Center.
Top seeded BAM (7-1) faces Tundaz (1-7) in a 7 p.m. tipoff.
• Dennis Fujimoto, photographer and staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 253) or dfujimoto@ thegardenisland.com.