08 - 17
July 2019
7 Dru-leo Leusogi Ape (SAM)
to read

''I'm proud to represent my country'' - Leusogi Ape

Apia (Samoa) - Dru-Leo Leusogi Ape has been turning heads in the ongoing 2019 Pacific Games Basketball Tournament with his brilliant play leading Samoa to the Qualifying Final Round.

The 17-year old sensation pumped in 27 points, six rebounds, five assists and added 5 blocks for good measure in their thrilling 98-90 win over Tonga to tow the host country to the next round.

"It's always been my dream playing at this level. I remember when I was young I didn't think I would play internationally because I was living in New Zealand but then my Dad loved coming back home to Samoa," Dru shared.

"We would come here once a year so when we had the opportunity to play for Samoa we just grabbed it right away. I'm proud to represent my country," he added.

Despite his otherworldly performances for a player his age, Dru remains humble and believes he's got a lot of things to improve on.

"I still got a lot of things to work on, this is just the beginning for me. I'm trying to go into a University in America and I'm pushing as far as I can go," said the Atlanta Hawks fan.

Dru is averaging 24.7 points and 7.0 rebounds including a personal-best 32 points against defending champion, Guam.

After losing their first two games to Guam (81-105) and New Caledonia (63-76), Samoa came up huge in a win or go home contest against Tonga to advance to the Qualifying Finals and face Papua New Guinea.

"I've seen a few games of PNG, they are very athletic and know how to play. It will be tough and we still got to work our system trust each other and see how it goes," Dru said.

"We have to play really hard and we can do it through teamwork to earn that "W" and hopefully advance to the Semi-Finals," he added.

Dru also commended the tremendous boost the team receives playing in front of their home crowd. 

"The momentum from the crowd every time we score and the crowd goes crazy that lifts us up as a team. I'm hoping they bring the same energy in our next game and we will do our best to make everyone proud of us!" he shared.