Last-placed Kinmen Liquor pulled off their second upset in three games, topping Taiwan Beer 99-86 at the Sinjhuang Sports Complex in New Taipei City last night to open the new year on a high note.
Taylor King and Shang Wei-fan had a huge day at the office with the former downing 32 points and the latter racking up 21 to account for more than half of their team’s total in their best offensive showing of the season.
It was the seventh game in which King has scored at least 30 points, making the former Duke University standout the top offensive threat in the league despite the fact that the Distillers are dead last in the standings with a dismal 4-12 record.
Both teams showed a tremendous desire to win in a high-scoring and even first quarter that saw the Distillers take a slim 25-23 lead thanks to nine quick points by Lin Guan-luen and 12 from last week’s Player of the Week Taiwan Beer forward Tso Tsong-kai.
However, the Brew Crew slipped on their offense, with Tso spending nearly five minutes on the bench, and fell behind by 13 points to give Kinmen Liquor a surprising 54-39 lead at the half.
Following some strong words at halftime by coach Liu Jia-fa, the Brew Crew managed to reduce the deficit to seven by outscoring the Distillers 25-17 in the third on the strength of eight points by hired gun Byron Allen.
However, that was as close as they got with King and Shang converting on clutch baskets to keep Kinmen Liquor’s cushion at a comfortable 10 or more points throughout the final quarter.
Besides outshooting the Brew Crew by a 51 percent to 46 percent margin, the Distillers also dominated the glass at both ends by outrebounding the three-time champs by a whopping 42-27.
LeoPards 88, Bank of Taiwan 82
The Taiwan Mobile Cloud Leopards began the new year with a 88-82 victory over Bank of Taiwan in the second game in Sinjhuang last night to improve to 11-6 for the season.