2016 FBA Season/16.06.27/SEA@ALB/Capsule

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Goooooooooooooood Evening everyone, I'm Chris Whalen, your panda in the press, with coverage of Game 5 of the FBA Finals! We're here in Albany for a game which promises to be a barn burner, as Seattle tries to come back from a 3 - 1 deficit against the Alphas. Will the Coffee Husky finally get his ring? Or will the Foul Fox lead his team to another win, taking them once step closer from snatching victory from last year's runners-up? It could be anyone's game here tonight.

Seattle starts out big and strong with a HUUUUUGE offensive push in the first quarter as a desperation tactic, and so far it’s stymied the home team just a little bit as the Alphas’ inside presence struggles to keep up with the Summit’s barrage of baskets. Albany seems a little disorganized on the court, allowing Jake Turner (Red Fox, C/F) to come in with 12 points already this first quarter. Albany’s highest scorer is Christine Harfurd (Puma, G) with only 6, but per usual, they’re spreading the points around, and have managed to hold on well enough to keep Seattle’s lead here in the first quarter to only single digits. It might be too early to say this, but Albany’s going to have to step up strong in the second quarter, or we’re going to be flying back to Seattle for game 6. Seattle 36 - Albany 27.

Albany finally looks alive in the second quarter with a more aggressive response to the Summit, which is causing a couple of the bigger bodies on Seattle to make some critical mistakes. Both teams are playing hard and fast, but the confidence the Summit possessed in the first quarter seems to be rattled a little, and the Alphas are taking full advantage of the change. On the last possession of the half, Lindsey Morrison (Border Collie, G) makes an incredible steal, tossing the ball mid-court at the buzzer, which rattles its way in to cut the deficit down to just two points. At halftime, our game leaders are Turner with 19 points, Harfurd with 12, Viran Kivar (Jaguar, F) with 5 rebounds, 2 of them offensive, and Rodger Umaechi (Husky, F) with 6 assists. Seattle 60 – Albany 58.

After halftime, the Summit continues to push hard with their offense, giving alllll their bigs some heavy minutes, but the Alphas defensive rotations are forcing the visitors to take less-than-ideal shots, causing even more misses here in the third quarter. Albany capitalizes on the missed opportunities and manage to take the lead late in the quarter, coming out ahead of the Summit for the first time this game, showing that even with 3 players out, they’re not afraid to go strong and strive for victory. Considering Turner has 28 points to Harfurd’s 19, it says a lot that Seattle is being outscored this late in the game, though Umaechi racking up 9 assists so far probably doesn’t help, either. Let’s see if the Alphas can hold on, or if the Summit will be able to strike back, as we head into the final quarter! Seattle 84 – Albany 90.

Here in the last quarter, both teams are pulling out all the stops, and it shows, as the injuries start piling up. Albany’s still playing just as aggressively, but exhaustion can be seen as they struggle to keep their lead in the last quarter. Susan Kruegar (Raccoon, F/C) and Timur Tomilin (Mammoth, C) go out early in the quarter, with "Speedbump" Kinny DeMarcus (Hairy Bush Viper, G/F) shortly behind them, straining his shoulder on sinking a huge three pointer for Seattle. By now, both teams have opted for a focus on strong offense in an attempt to ramp up their scores. Another pileup sees Sheila Andrews (Grizzly Bear, F/C) and Seria Delgado (White Wolf, F) off the court; both teams playing hard to get that precious W. For the last couple of minutes, the game is tied at 113 apiece, as both teams seem to have little left to give at the end of the quarter.

With seconds left on Seattle's possession, a game-deciding steal for Albany as Umaechi snags the rock and quickly passes it out to a rushing Apiatan Redmane (Water Buffalo, G) who is able to trot it all the way up to the hoop for a layup that rattles on the rim before falling through as the buzzer goes off to score the final points of the game! The Alphas have done it! Ladies and Gentlefurs, the Albany Alphas are your champions for 2016! What a game! I’m Chris Whalen, your panda in the press, signing off for FSPN sports radio!

-C. Whalen

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