News>Army, Navy score early basketball wins against Marines, Air Force
The Air Force wheelchair basketball team battles the Navy team for possession of the ball May 17, 2011, during the 2011 Warrior Games in Colorado Springs, Colo. The Navy beat the Air Force 23-14 and next will face the Marine Corps. The Air Force team will play the Army. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Christopher Griffin)
Air Force wheelchair basketball team members scramble as a Navy team member prepares to shoot during their game May 17, 2011, at the 2011 Warrior Games in Colorado Springs, Colo. The Navy beat the Air Force 23-14 and next will face the Marine Corps. The Air Force team plays the Army. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Christopher Griffin)
by Staff Sgt. J. Paul Croxon
Defense Media Activity
5/18/2011 - COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AFNS) -- Both the Army and Navy scored first-round wheelchair basketball wins May 17 during the 2011 Warrior Games here.
The Army bested their rival from last year with a 39-24 win over the Marine Corps during the first day of the wheelchair basketball competition. Though both teams played with dramatic intensity, the Army achieved and maintained a lead over the Marines for most of the game. Even with the first-game loss, the Marines are still in the running for an overall win.
"We're going to do what we did last year," said one of the Marine Corps coaches, referring to the Marines' overall win over the Army during last year's finals. "We've added a few more plays and have practiced a few new techniques, but we're going to approach it the way we did last year."
The Air Force added new players and developed new plays for the 2011 series. Despite losing to the Navy 23-14, the Air Force demonstrated improved passing and agility for many of their points.
"Last year we were basically just five people throwing a ball around," said retired Chief Master Sgt. Damian Orslene, a returnee from last year. "This year we're using plays and communicating better."
All four teams hit the courts again May 20 for the second preliminary round, which determines the rankings going into the finals.