Seoul American boys clinch another title
Their offensive output has suffered without senior forward Bryant McCray, sidelined with a sprained ankle. But that didn’t stop Seoul American’s boys basketball team from winning the 10th regular-season title in 11 seasons on coach Steve Boyd’s watch.Tomiwa Akinbayo scored 14 points and grabbed 16 rebounds as the Falcons struggled offensively for the third straight game, surviving 41-35 at Yongsan International-Seoul.“We’ll take it,” Boyd said after the Falcons improved to 12-0, three games ahead of Taejon Christian International (9-3) with two regular-season games remaining. Seoul American is now 17-6 overall. “We just have to get healthy and get back on task.”Since McCray was injured 2½ weeks ago, the Falcons have averaged 51.3 points per game – well off their 76.8-ppg pace of their first nine KAIAC contests.“He makes a big difference, not having him in the lineup,” said Boyd of McCray, who plays small forward and has averaged 14 points and 11 rebounds per game, taking pressure off Akinbayo and the shooting guards. “He does a lot of things for us.”Particularly in the last two games, including a 46-26 home win over Seoul International on Tuesday, “we’ve had trouble putting the ball in the basket,” Boyd said.So the Falcons turned to a defense that shut out the Guardians 10-0 in the second quarter, turning a 17-11 deficit into a 21-17 halftime lead.“Everybody plays us tough. YIS-Seoul played us very aggressively in the half court, they made us work for everything we got.”Still, Boyd said he was happy to come away with the title, his ninth outright KAIAC regular-season title; the Falcons shared it with Seoul Foreign in 2006-07 and came up short in the 2009-10 season.“We’re really missing McCray, but we somehow found a way to win,” Boyd said.His Falcons look to defend the title in the KAIAC postseason tournament Feb. 10-11 at Seoul Foreign.