Jien Ming-fu and Wu Yong-ren's combined 38 points, 14 rebounds, and 13 assists helped the Bank of Taiwan edge past YMY 99-97 in Taiwan's Super Basketball League action at the Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium on Friday night.
The backcourt tandem for the financial wizards put together another fine effort following last Sunday's 109-87 trouncing of the Vidoeland Hunters to move their winning percentage to above .500 (14-13) for the first time this season -- just one victory shy of qualifying for the postseason play.
"All we have to do is win one of the four [games remaining in the regular season] and we are in [postseason play]," Bank of Taiwan coach Wei Chen-ming said.
Friday's game started with YMY hitting over half of their shots in the first quarter to take a 25-18 lead.
It took six "threes" by the slow-starting bankers to take control of the game in the second quarter as they answered with 34 points to close out the first half leading by four (52-48).
YMY then evened things up midway through the third quarter, the bankers' three-point attack was switched on again as they managed to widen the lead back up to double-digits.
But a tenacious YMY rally, coupled with several misfires and mental mistakes by the bankers kept YMY within striking distance before the bankers finally eked out the win in the closing seconds.
Lin Chuin-fong, Chu Yong-hong and Yang Jing-ming (the rest of the bankers' starting five) also scored in double-digits for the game.
As for YMY (2-23), which had six different players scoring in double-digits, inability to come up with the key shots late in the game ultimately cost them the chance to win as they lost their 22nd straight game of the season.
Hunters 91, Dinos 100
For the second time in two weeks the Yulon Dinos' Chou Shih-yuan took matters into his own hands and single-handedly delivered the knockout punch -- this time in a game against the Hunters.
It was Chou's last-second three-pointer and a spectacular defensive block that sealed the 80-77 win for the Dinos on Feb. 26.
In Friday's game, it was Chou's career-high 33 points that helped the Dinos sink the Hunters 100-91 for their fourth straight win.
Resorting to an effective inside attack gave the Hunters a 17-15 lead at the end of the first quarter. The Hunters held leads as big as six points in the second quarter before the Dinos fought back to claim a 44-41 advantage by halftime.
Although the Hunters were able to keep things fairly close in the second half, they were never able to reclaim the lead.
The Dinos gave up only seven turnovers.
Guard Lee Hsueh-lin had 22 points along with All-Star center Tseng Wen-ding's 17 to round out the top scorers for the Dinos, while Lee Chi-yi led the Hunters with 31 points and 10 rebounds.