Asean Basketball League Roundup: May 9-12, 2012

Nick Fazekas and the Beetmen stifled the
efforts of Jonathan Jones and the Heat.

The San Miguel Beermen stayed hot heading into the AirAsia ABL Playoffs. The Beermen’s defense proved to be too much for the Saigon Heat. With this win, the Beermen have won 12 of their last 13 games, finishing the regular with the best record in the league at 17 wins and only 4 lossses. 

Nick Fazekas came up big for the Beermen once again as he finished with 24 points and 12 rebounds. Leo Avenido had 15 points and Duke Crews added 12 points for SMB. 

San Miguel actually started to pull away at the end of the third quarter. A follow up by Fazekas off a Norman Gonzales miss started an 8-0 run for the Beermen at this point. An alley-oop dunk by Crews and a free throw by Chris Banchero then stretched the Beermen’s lead to 64-51 going into the fourth quarter. The Heat were also held to only 10 points in the third period.

Beermen’s coach Bobby Parks credited his team’s defense for the win.

“We did not play great tonight but our defense helped us win the game,” said Coach Parks after the game. “We are going straight back to work when we get back to Manila. We have to get ready for the playoffs right away.” 

Jonathan Jones finished with 25 points and 12 rebounds for the Heat while Rob Sanz and Jahmar Thorpe added 11 points each. 

Even though the Heat did not have a chance to make it to the playoffs, Tan Binh Stadium was still sold out and the fans were still in full support for their favorite team.

“I can’t say enough about all these fans. They are very great and they are the best fans in the world,” said Coach Rabedeaux. “We are looking forward to next season and I would like to wish good luck to all the four teams competing in the playoffs. They are all very good and well-coached teams.” 

SMB 83 – Fazekas 24, Avenido 15, Crews 12, Yap 10, Baguion 7, Banchero 5, Fernandez 2, Ferriols 2, Cabatu 2, Gonzales 2, Fajardo 2
SGH 68 – Jones 25, Sanz 11, Thorpe 11, Trieu 9, Smith 7, Nguyen 5
QS: 20-20, 41-41, 64-51, 83-68

Jahmar Thorpe coasts past Al Vergara for
the easy deuce.

The Westports Malaysia Dragons landed on third spot when the Singapore Slingers demolished them in front of their own home crowd. Coupled with an Indonesia Warriors win this Sunday, which is also against the Slingers, the Dragons will finish fourth and be matched up against the current top-seeded San Miguel Beermen in the playoffs.

It was a relatively even first half, but the Slingers pulled away in the second quarter with an 11-2 run capped by a three from Wong Wei Long to grab a 13-point lead, 41-28. They continued to steadily build on their lead and they held a very comfortable 62-39 halftime lead in front of a stunned Dragons home crowd.

The night was looking worse and worse for the Dragons as Brian Williams hit the floor hard and limp off the court three minutes into the third quarter. Fortunately for the Dragons, he was able to rejoin his team on the court after a quick examination.

The Slingers continued their incredible run and earned themselves a massive 30-point lead with a little over three minutes to go until the fourth. It was all but finished from that point.

Louis Graham finished the game with 32 points and 10 rebounds for the Slingers, while Donald Dulay scored 24 points. Kyle Jeffers rounded up the Slingers’ top three scorers with 16 markers.

Brian Williams topscored for the Dragons with 30 points and 13 rebounds while Tiras Wade was not far behind him with 27 points. Amongst the rest of the Dragons squad only Shee Fai Loh managed double digits in scoring with 10 markers.

SGS 105 – Graham 32, Dulay 24, Jeffers 16, Canta 12, Wong 10, Oh 5, Lim 4, Matialakan 2
WMD 88 – Williams 30, Wade 27, Loh 10, Lau 5, Pacana 5, Cabahug 4, Belasco 3, Ng 2, Kuppusamy 2
QS: 28-24, 62-39, 85-61, 105-88

Don Dulay and the Slingers embarrassed the
Dragons on their own home floor.

The AirAsia Philippine Patriots were forced to fight until the final buzzer to beat the Chang Thailand Slammers at the Thai Japanese Association Gym.  

Anthony Johnson, playing through a groin injury, contributed 15 points for the Patriots, who finished the season with a record of 16 wins and 5 losses.  Marcy Arellano, Rob Wainwright and Nakiea Miller added 11 points each. 

“We are ready for the playoffs and I will do everything to help my team win in the playoffs.” said Johnson after the game. The Patriots will find out who they will face in the playoffs tomorrow after the game between the Indonesia Warriors and Singapore Slingers. 

It looked like the Patriots would have been able to rest Johnson and Miller when Johnson finished an alley-oop pass from Al Vergara and was fouled in the process. Johnson’s three-point play gave Patriots a 49-30 lead with 5:40 left in the third quarter.

The Slammers had other ideas, however, and came alive to quickly trim the Patriots’ lead. Thailand’s Rexander Leynes was very aggressive at the end of the third quarter and his reverse lay-up at the buzzer cut the Patriots’ adfvantage even further to  single digits going into the fourth quarter. 

Things did not go the Patriots’ way early in the fourth quarter when Miller was forced to leave the game after receiving two technical fouls. In Miller’s absence, Wainwright stepped up to help his team regain a double-digit lead. A three-point shot and a lay-up by Wainwright stretched the Patriots’ lead to 71-58 with 5:52 left.

Calvin Williams had 21 points while Leynes added 15 points for the Slammers, who finished the season with a record of 5 wins and 16 losses despite being crowned league champions last season. 

APP 80 – Johnson 15, Miller 11, Wainwright 11, Arellano 11, Larong 8, Vergara 7, Raymundo 5, Ramos 4, Fernandez 3, Adriano 3, Rodriguez 2
CTS 74 – Williams 21, Leynes 15, Garnett 13, Pinitpatcharalert 11, Apiromvilaichai 7, Lertmalaiporn 4, Jantuma 2, Supachai 1
QS: 20-13, 36-23, 57-49, 80-74

It was the battle for the sixth spot on the standings when these two AirAsia ABL newcomers battled it out for the final time this season. After leading for most of the game, the Bangkok Cobras steadily ran out of steam, which allowed the Saigon Heat to close out their season on a high note as they escaped Thailand with a big win and the sixth position overall in their first run in the league. 

Jonathan Jones finished as the game’s top scorer with 32 points and 16 rebounds for Saigon, followed by Jahmar Thorpe who recorded 22 points. The rest of the squad did not have a good afternoon, however, and collectively scored only 14 points among them. 

For the Cobras, Travis George finished with 19 points followed by Marvin Cruz and his 13. Danai Kongkum rounded up the Cobras’ top three with 9. The Cobras also played without Gentry Lewis in this game after he was released earlier this week.
The Cobras controlled most of the game until a Jahmar Thorpe three-pointer early in the fourth saw the Heat grab the lead for the first time. Cruz and George answered almost immediately with baskets, however, to take it away from the visitors. The lead then changed four times between the teams before a Thorpe basket at 0:42 gave the Heat their biggest lead of 4 points for this game. In the heart-stopping final seconds, Marvin Cruz then sank a basket to put the Cobras back within two points with 30 seconds remaining. George then had a chance to throw the game into overtime with 6 seconds left, but missed his shot. 

SGH 68 – Jones 32, Thorpe 22, Sanz 7, Smith 5, Trieu 2
BKC 66 – George 19, Cruz 13, Kongkum 9, Klahan 6, Kruatiwa 6, Wanna 5, Reyes 4, Limsuwan 4
QS: 9-22, 26-36, 46-49, 68-66

Danai Kongkum tries to shoot over two Heat players.
Darunpong Apiromvilaichai turns the corner
against the Saigon Heat.
Jahmar Thorpe and the Heat came back strong
to end the season with a win.

The Indonesia Warriors clinched the third seed for the playoffs, earning them a date with AirAsia Philippine Patriots after they defeated the Singapore Slingers. 

Evan Brock and Stanley Pringle continued to carry the Warriors. Brock recorded a double-double with 22 points and 11 rebounds, while Pringle added 21 points. Steven Thomas also contributed 20 points and 12 rebounds for Indonesia, who will face the Patriots in the semifinal round of the playoffs on May 27 at the Ynares Sports Arena. 

The Slingers, however, made the Warriors work for the win.  The Slingers were shooting the ball very well in the first half as the Warriors trailed, 30-39, with 6 minutes left before halftime after Slingers made a 9-0 run capped by a basket from Kyle Jeffers. 

The score was 67-65 for the Warriors at the start of the fourth quarter until the Warriors made a 12-2 run to open the final quarter with their biggest lead in the game. Amin Prihantono made back-to-back three point shots and Brock had four points during that stretch and subsequently the Warriors had a 79-67 lead with 5:53 left. 

Christian Ronaldo Sitepu made a good first impression for the Warriors as the 25-year old forward hit back-to-back threes to answer the Slingers’ run down the stretch. It was Thomas who made sure the Warriors finished the regular season with a record of 12 wins and 9 losses after icing the game with his free throw in the dying seconds.

The Warriors overcame a great effort from Louis Graham, who finished with 34 points. Jeffers contributed 17 and Don Dulay added 12 for the Slingers, who will not be advancing to the playoffs for the first time since joining the AirAsia ABL. The Slingers will finish the regular season at fifth position with a record of 9 wins and 12 losses. 

This will be the second time in the playoffs for the Warriors, having been finalists in the first season and falling short of making the playoffs last year. The Warriors will head to the playoffs carrying a five-game winning streak.  

INW 92 – Brock 22, pringle 21, Thomas 20, Prihantonop 11, Sitepu 6, Wuysang 6, Canada 3, Salangsang 3
SGS 85 – Graham 34, Jeffers 17, Dulay 12, Canta 9, Lim 6, Wong 4, Oh 3
QS: 25-27, 45-48, 67-65, 92-85

Louis Graham and the Slingers officially ended
their campaign after losing to Indonesia.

The Indonesia Warriors strengthened their squad for the upcoming playoffs with the inclusion of two local players, Arki Dikania Wisnu and Christian Ronaldo Sitepu.

Both Arki (Wisnu) and Dodo (Sitepu) are familiar faces in the Indonesian basketball scene as they both are both part of the NBL Indonesia Satria Muda team which has recently won the championship. Arki averaged 13.8 points per game in the NBL season and won two awards, Rookie of The Year and Sixth Man of the Year. The 6'2'' guard also has experience playing in US The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) division III with Baruch College.

Dodo is a promising young player and has the biggest upside of any player in Indonesia. The 6’8’’ forward can help the Warriors in rebounding, and he’s also a great defender. Dodo was part of the Indonesian National Team in the 2011 South East Asian Game. Dodo had a break-out performance in the 26th FIBA Asia Championship at Wuhan, China, where he was the leading scorer of Indonesia with 14 points per game. 

*Game Recaps compiled and compressed from
**All images are from

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