KL Dragons v.s. Formosa Dreamers.
A great start to the 2nd MABA International Basketball Invitational for us as we picked up the 85-77 victory over our ASEAN Basketball League rivals, the Formosa Dreamers from Chinese Taipei.
The first quarter proved to be a close affair but it would be our team taking the 19-14 advantage. Our tough defence held the Dreamers to 25% shooting and forced seven turnovers.
A Chiang Wei Er three pointer to start the second quarter set the pace for the team as we caught the three point shooting bug. Five three pointers from Wei Er, Benjamin Sim, Tem Zhen Jie and Simeon Lepichev ensured we took a 49-36 lead at the half.
The third quarter proved to be a tough affair as both Will Artino and Amir Bell picked up their third fouls. Despite missing our key imports, we managed to keep the Dreamers at bay for most of the third with help from a shot clock beating prayer three pointer from Benjamin Sim.
Last season’s No.1 ABL seed proved to be tough to put away as their new signing Jet Chang Tsung-Hsien went on a personal six point run to end the quarter, cutting our lead to only nine.
A three pointer from Dreamers other new signing, Yang Chin-min made it a nervous start to our fourth quarter for us as Dreamers attempted their final push.
Just as things looked dark, it would be Will Artino going big for us in the final quarter. Unleashing his frustrations from foul trouble earlier in the game, Artino proved unstoppable as he went on a 19 point rampage in the fourth quarter.
The big push from Artino took us through as we held firm to finish with the 85-77 win.
Will Artino was our top performer for the night with 25 points and 11 rebounds. Two of our local players, Nicholas Tem Zhen Jie and Benjamin Sim finished in double digits scoring with 12 and 11 points respectively.
A truly balanced team effort saw all our players getting themselves on the scoreboard.
After the game, Coach Jamie Pearlman said “I felt we executed well on offense at times and we showed a high level of toughness on defense. We have to improve on closing out on games. I’m not too happy that we allowed them back into the game at the end.”
“I’m really happy with our locals performance tonight. Everyone played their role well. Nicholas is showing a lot of improvement on his defense and it was great to see Ben Sim hit some huge shots for us.”
We next face the Malaysia National Team at 7.00 PM on the 23rd of October 2019. The National Team come into the tournament on good form, having won the recent PUBA International Basketball Tournament in Sabah, coming up victorious against international teams.
Featuring two of our players, Kuek Tian Yuan and Chin Cheng Wah and a multitude of our former players, the National Team will prove to be a tough challenge for us.