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Joseph Fears, player for the Marine Corps Intelligence Activity basketball team, attempts a layup around an opponent during a playoff game against Base Motor Transportation team at the Barber Physical Activity Center on April 29, 2013. MCIA won the game, 44-32.

Photo by Cpl. Antwaun Jefferson

Time to put up or shut up

29 Apr 2013 | Cpl. Antwaun Jefferson Marine Corps Base Quantico

The Intramural Basketball playoffs officially started and eight teams are now in the race to win the championship game and a year’s worth of bragging rights. The first two games to start the playoffs were held at the Barber Physical Activity Center on April 29, 2013.

The eight teams that secured a spot in the playoffs are from the American League: Marine Corps Intelligence Activity, Combat Instructor Weapons Company and Artillery Instructor Battery, Officer Candidates School and Marine Corps Embassy Security Group; And from the National League: Marine Corps Systems Command, Marine Corps Helicopter Squadron One, Combat Instructors Artillery Instructor Battery and Base Motor Transportation.

“I’m expecting a good clean competition among the eight teams,” said Robert Anderson, Intramural Sports director, Marine Corps Community Services. “They are all great teams, but I think the teams to look out for this year are MCSC, HMX-1 and MCIA. Those teams have been playing together for years and they have become a solid team because of it. It’s going to be fun to see who takes it this year.”

The first two games of the playoffs featured MCIA versus Base MT and MCESG going up against CI AIB.

In the MCIA/Base MT game, MCIA took a 5-1 lead early in the game and never gave it back. Base MT was constantly on the coattails of their opponents, yet inadvertent fouls hurt them in the long run, giving MCIA easy points at the free throw line. In the second half, Base MT gathered themselves and came back to within a two-point deficit. MCIA’s relentless offensive assault was too much for them and Base MT lost the game, 44-32.

In the second game, it seemed as if CI AIB was going to make quick work of their opponents, MCESG, as their run-and-gun offense gained them a six-point lead in the first two minutes of play. Soon, MCESG found a weakness in the CI AIB’s offense and began to leave CI AIB in the dust, wondering what went wrong. In the end, MCESG won the game, 55-46.

“We never played CI AIB before, so it took us some time to understand how they play the game,” said Brandon Ruth, head coach, MCESG. “My team had great ball movement and chemistry. And as soon as we figured out the other team’s strategy, we never looked back.”

Even though the Base MT and CI AIB lost their games, one of them will still have one more chance to make an appearance in the championship game by beating everyone else in the loser’s bracket of the playoffs. The championship game will be played May 6, 2013, at the gym.

Marine Corps Base Quantico