Taiwan Beer bounced back from a tough loss to Kinmen Liquor on Friday with a solid 73-67 win over the Yulon Luxgens at the Sinjhuang Sports Complex in New Taipei City yesterday to split the two-game weekend.
Big man Patrick O’Bryant had a huge day at the office with a game-high 31 points and 18 rebounds to lead the Brew Crew past their rivals in a win that solidified their No. 3 spot in the standings.
His 13 points in the decisive third quarter helped Taiwan Beer turn a halftime deficit into a comfortable lead and were the main reason that the Brew Crew came out ahead.
Seven first-quarter points by Yulon sharpshooter Lu Cheng-rue propelled the Car-makers to a 19-14 advantage after the first 10 minutes, before the Beermen returned the favor with a decent second quarter to trail the Luxgens 36-35 at the half.
That set up O’Bryant’s brilliant third, which gave Taiwan Beer a 58-50 lead after three quarters that they did not relinquish.
Sloppy ball-handling that resulted in 17 turnovers for the Luxgens in the absence of injured point guard Sabatino Chen further exposed the four-time champions’ vulnerability in a backcourt that was sorely missing departed field general Lin Hsueh-lin, who left to join China’s Chinese Basketball Association.
Yulon also fell victims to a couple of questionable calls by the officiating crew that could gave Taiwan Beer two big breaks late in the game in a late-game rally attempt by the Luxgens.
LEOPARDS 88, TIGERS 78
The Taiwan Mobile Cloud Leopards made it two wins in a row in a perfect 2-0 weekend with a triumph over the Dacin Tigers in the second game in Sinjhuang last night.
Luke Nevill made the most of his 10cmh height advantage over Tigers center Reggie Okosa by tearing up the middle of the paint with 22 points, nine rebounds and three blocked shots.
Even though Okosa ended up with two more points than Nevill, the Australian made his inside presence felt against the Cats’ other shooters as they were forced to alter their shots, with Nevill holding his ground inside the paint.
“I am quite pleased with what we have accomplished given the number of injuries we have sustained recently,” Tigers skipper Hsu Chih-chao said after the game, referring to the absence of team icon Tien Lei to a knee injury, as well as defensive specialist Chang Chih-fong.
KINMEN LIQUOR 86, BANK OF TAIWAN 74
Kinmen Liquor also took care of business in their weekend finale against Bank of Taiwan with a victory in the nightcap game in Sinjhuang last night.
A nine-point effort by Chen Ching-huan helped the Distillers roll off a 22-9 run in the second quarter that broke the game wide open, as they led it 40-24 at the half en route to a double-digit win.