AFSOC leaves 16th MDG wounded on court, 57-36

Richard Johnston (left) drives to teh basket, as teammate Mark Forbes fends off the opponents in the play-off game Tuesday in the Aderholt Fitness Center.

Richard Johnston (left) drives to teh basket, as teammate Mark Forbes fends off the opponents in the play-off game Tuesday in the Aderholt Fitness Center.

Lynn Lawrence, 16th Medical Group team, shoots, while Richard Johnston (left) and Kenneth Hansford, Air Force Special Operations Command, defend during the over-30 basketball play-off game Tuesday in the Aderholt Fitness Center.

Lynn Lawrence, 16th Medical Group team, shoots, while Richard Johnston (left) and Kenneth Hansford, Air Force Special Operations Command, defend during the over-30 basketball play-off game Tuesday in the Aderholt Fitness Center.

HURLBURT FIELD, Fla. -- With 23 three-pointers between Air Force Special Operations Command (10) and the 16th Medical Group (13), the over-30 basketball championship Wednesdsay and playoff game Tuesday in the Aderholt Fitness Center were anything, but uneventful . 

After a 57-36 upset in the playoff game Tuesday, AFSOC regained its composure to win the championship, 52-39. 

However, the medic’s offense in the championship wasn’t enough to overcome AFSOC defensive center, Mark Forbes, as he controlled the rebounds and blocked shots.
Richard Johnston, AFSOC, also contributed to the win with his four three-pointers. 

“Most of the time we had numbers on them,” said Clarence Branson, AFSOC coach. “The guys just kept their eyes on the ball and played tight defense.” 

Facing a completely different team than they saw in the playoffs, the 16th MDG fell 20 points behind AFSOC within the first few minutes of the second half. So, their intensity grew strong, and fouling became routine. This proved detrimental to the team’s ability to recover, as Yeta Holloway, AFSOC, went to the foul line approximately six times, making 90 percent of his shots. 

As the first half of the playoff game came to an end, the 16th MDG held the lead 33-23. However, at the half in the championship game, AFSOC had the lead 28-17.
“We lived to fight another day,” said Alan Helper, AFSOC coach, after Tuesday’s win.
“In the playoff game, the medics hustled more after loose balls and worked well together,” Branson said. “We knew we needed to do that if we were going to win the championship.” 

From the start of the playoff game, the medics set the pace with a 10-0 lead in the first 3 minutes. They continued to out-shoot and out-play AFSOC, keeping a 10-point margin up until the last three minutes of the game. 

AFSOC attempted to close the gap, but the medics remained two steps, or rather, two points, ahead of their game. 

With a few last shots in the final minutes, the medics pulled away – leaving AFSOC with its first loss of the playoffs.