Sharks maul Lions 58-53 in Straits Cup

By Paul Huang  /  Contributing reporter

Sun, Oct 14, 2012 - Page 20

An enthusiastic Taichung crowd got a taste of an all-Chinese CBA match yesterday afternoon as they cheered on the Shanghai Maxxis Sharks who downed the Zhejiang Guangsha Lions 58-53 at the National Taiwan Sport University Gymnasium on the second day of the 2012 Straits Cup Basketball Invitational Tournament.

While local boy and former Yulon Luxgen center Tseng Wen-ding sat out the game to get some additional rest after more than 30 minutes of play in Friday night’s opener, Amis tribe warrior Lin “the Beast” Chih-jeh (formerly of Taiwan Beer) did see some floor time to keep the fans happy, even though he was not his usual self, with only two points and two assists to show for his efforts.

“I haven’t had much time to practice with the team since the end of the Asian Cup two weeks ago, but that should not be an excuse for me,” Lin said after the game.

He was not alone in a somewhat disappointing outing as fellow center Wang Cheng also struggled with several early fouls. He was to foul out midway through the third quarter to weaken the Lions interior defense.

Neither team found their shooting range in a sloppy, low-scoring first half that ended with the Sharks leading 25-22. However, the Sharks took advantage of a timid Wang — who got into foul trouble early — to get the bulk of their points, while the Lions fell deeper into despair with numerous unforced turnovers and poor shot selection.

Although the Lions managed to rally to within three of the Sharks with an all-out effort after trailing by as many as nine points in the fourth quarter, it was too little too late for them as they turned the ball over on two of their final four possessions.

Tigers 82, Pure Youth 76

A thunderous slam by Tien Lei was the highlight of the showdown between the Dacin Tigers and Pure Youth Construction in the second game in Taichung.

Not only did the Cats earn a win after their opening loss to the Sharks the night before, but they also avenged a bitter loss in the SBL Championship Series back in May.

The Builders were missing three regular starters with Chen “Airman” Hsin-an, Quincy Davis and Doug Creighton all ruled out, forcing skipper Hsu Jing-tseh to play with a lineup that was made up mostly of reserves.