A pair of three-pointers by Wu Yung-ren led the way in a 26-point third for the Taiwan Mobile Cloud Leopards as they rallied from a five-point deficit at the half to top Taiwan Beer in a 76-74 final at the University of Taipei Gymnasium in Tianmu last night.
The win not only evened the best-of-seven series at 1-1 for the Leopards, who dropped the opener to the Brew Crew the night before, but also brought them back from a near-disastrous first quarter that put them at risk of an 0-2 start in the series.
Taiwan Beer opened with a 14-5 advantage in the first five minutes of play behind a strong effort by Patrick O’Bryant and kept the lead at eight, despite allowing the Leopards to get in the game with a small run of their own toward the end of RUN
After an evenly fought second quarter that brought the Leopards to within five, the second-seeds decided to take their game up a notch by outscoring Taiwan Beer 26-15 in the third, highlighted by a 7-2 run in the first three minutes of the quarter to take a 56-50 lead.
That was the break that the Leopards needed to turn the tide, as they held off a tenacious comeback attempt by the Brew Crew with some clutch baskets late in the game from hired gun Luke Nevill to secure the victory.
TIGERS 80, PURE YOUTH 67
The Dacin Tigers bounced back from a 10-point defeat in Saturday night’s opener with a 80-67 trouncing of Pure Youth Construction in Game Two in Tianmu late yesterday afternoon to knot the best-of-seven series at one win apiece.
Dacin came out firing in the series-equalizer with a stellar defense that held the two-time defending champs to seven points in the opening quarter, before following up that act with an equally impressive second quarter to double up the Builders in a 32-16 affair at the half.
Even though Pure Youth would break out of their scoring slump in the third quarter with 23 points, it did not put a dent in the Tigers’ lead, as they also netted 23 over the same time span to take a 55-39 lead into the fourth quarter.
Pure Youth managed to reduce the deficit to 10 during the fourth and actually came within nine of the Tigers with a pair of free-throws from Chien Chia-hung with approximately a minute remaining in the contest, but that was as close as they got as the Cats buckled down and held on to win it by 13.