In the first quarter of the game, it seemed to be a Miguel Tomley versus Nishad Tarak matchup, not the Tamanawis Wildcats against the Belmont Bulldogs.
Both were hitting 3s left, right and centre! Tarak opened up the scoring, but Tomley clapped back, again and again. They proved their worth from outside the arc by hitting nearly every single field goal.
By the end of the first quarter, the Wildcats led by only 1 point, with 20-19.
Bulldogs’ Isaac Ickovich started the second off with an easy layup, regaining the lead for his team for a brief moment until Tomley hit yet another trey.
Much of the quarter went shot-for-shot between Belmont and Tami. Tarak and Tomley continued to dominate their 3-pointers and FGs.
Heading into the second half, the Wildcats led 48-45.
Tomley began the next half with a beautiful buzzer-beater 3, setting the crowd off on an absolute frenzy. The Bulldogs missed on their possession, giving the Wildcats’ star yet another shot at the basket—which he was good on.
The third showcased both teams moving the ball well in transition, and of course, Tomley carrying the Wildcats on the scoreboard.
Tamanawis surprisingly rotated the ball around the rest of the team, giving them a chance to make a climb in points without trusty # 10 putting in all the work.
A little pile-up halted play for a moment, but kept the momentum on the Wildcats’ side of the court at the end of the quarter. They led 73-65 with only 10 minutes remaining.
In the final quarter, Tami stayed ahead on the board playing solid D and finding the basket on most of their possessions early on.
Tomley incurred his fourth foul, but that didn’t stop him from continuing to dominate inside and outside the paint.
Belmont’s Lucas Gage went to the bench on his fifth foul, seemingly draining the last of the Bulldogs energy on the floor. The Wildcats pressured their opponents just enough to keep a firm lead by 15 points with only 4 minutes remaining.
Once the score hit 100 for Tami, it was all over.
The Tamanawis Wildcats took home the bronze medal and Miguel Tomley was named POG with a monstrous 66 points.
After the game, he was happy that his team wasn’t going home empty handed.
“I mean, it’s not what we wanted,” he said. “But at least we got the bronze.”
Tomley commented that yesterday that just did not come out to play. He did show up to tonight’s 3rd place game with an interesting pair of socks showing out of his kicks. They read, “I love haters.” What was the reasoning behind them? He had this to say:
“When I was younger I got these for AAU because everyone else was wearing them. A lot of kids in the states were wearing them, so I was like, ‘Yo, I’m gonna get them.’ I kept them locked away for a bit, and then I decided to wear them today in the third place game.”
You tell ‘em, Tomley.
For more highlights from all of today’s Bronze Medal matches, head over to our YouTube channel!
Written by: Crystal Scuor