By Nathan Pfau, Army Flier Staff WriterMarch 12, 2018
FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- As fans prepare for March Madness, the Fort Rucker Intramural Basketball Season is well under way as teams battle it out in the regular season for a shot at the post championship title.
The 1st Battalion, 14th Aviation Regiment team, Squad Up, took on the Black Hawks, the post team made up of players from various units, in a game that had both teams fighting hard, but it was the post team that would ultimately come out on top, winning 68-59.
"We did well as a team -- we came together and had a better second half than the first. (Squad Up) is kind of our rival team and it's always close every time we play them," said Otto Lance, Black Hawks team coach. "But I think we've got a good shot to win the end-of-season tournament -- we can definitely come out on top. I just think we need to work a little more on our man-to-man defense and a bit on our free throws."
A strong offense is what gave the Black Hawks the upper hand at the start, managing to get possession first at the tip off, following up with a lay up to get on the scoreboard first.
The Black Hawks took possession first and were first to get on the scoreboard with a layup.
The post team came out with an aggressive offense and Squad Up tried to match their ferocity with a tight defense, which managed to keep the 1-14th on their opponent's heels early in the half, trailing by only two points, minutes in.
The Black Hawks had other plans, though, as they managed to pull away, outmaneuvering Squad Up at every turn. As the half progressed, the Black Hawks managed to pull an 11-point lead with five minutes remaining in the half.
The 1-14th had to step up their game if they wanted to stay in it, and despite multiple fouls against Squad Up, which allowed for numerous free throws, the Black Hawks' superior shooting kept them comfortably ahead at the half, 36-27.
The second half was where the game started to get interesting as Squad Up had some advantage going in as they took possession first. They had their work cut out for them, though, but they started the half out on the right foot with a layup. But any ground they gained was almost immediately lost, though, with a foul against the Black Hawks, resulting in two made free throws. Early in the half, Squad Up couldn't seem to find their offensive footing, and the Black Hawks shooting prowess kept them well ahead.
Squad Up didn't give up, though, and continued to push against the post team in their attempt to close the gap, but they couldn't seem to break the 8-point deficit as the Black Hawks' defense remained tight and their offense stayed solid.
Squad Up finally managed to get it together and get break their stagnation with a free throw, but time wasn't on their side.
As the half progressed and time wound down, the post team seemed to visibly tire and a fire was lit under the 1-14th, which managed to get within two points of their opponents with just 2 minutes remaining in the game.
But despite Squad Up's last minute attempt, the Black Hawks' rallied by tightening up their defense and refining their shooting in the remaining seconds of the game to maintain their lead and hold on for the win, 68-59.