2013 ASEAN Basketball League Roundup: March 22-24, 2013

The Jobstreet.com Singapore Slingers were the big losers this past week, dropping both their games to fall half a game behind the Chang Thailand Slammers in the standings. In contrast, the Westports Malaysia Dragons solidified their hold of third place, while the San Miguel Beermen tied things up at first with the Indonesia Warriors.

Last Friday, Marcus Hubbard registered a 17-12 double-double to lead Malaysia past Singapore. He got a lot of help from Gavin Edwards and Justin Melton, who scored 23 and 18 points respectively. Edwards also had 5 steals, while Melton and Hubbard each hit 2 treys. The Slingers squandered their edge on the boards by going turning the ball over 13 more times and hitting just 50% of their freebies. Rashaad Singleton was the only Slinger in twin digits with 25 points, but he accounted for all 10 misses from the fre throw line for Singapore.

Justin Melton caught fire for the Dragons.

Yesterday, Chris Banchero scored 19 points and dished out 6 assists as the Beermen beat the Slingers for their ninth win in 12 games. Brian Williams had an 11-11 double-double, while Leo Avenido netted 10 points for SMB. Singapore’s two imports, Rashad Jones-Jennings and Rashaad Singleton, combined for 27 points and 27 rebounds, while ASEAN imports Philip Morrison and JunJun Cabatu contributed 10 points each in the losing effort.

Game Recaps:
It was the home team that came out ahead however as the Dragons were on fire tonight. Gavin Edwards ended the game with 23 points, followed by Justin Melton’s 18. Marcus Hubbard recorded a double-double of 17 points and 12 rebounds.

The Dragons started off the game with a shooting clinic in the first quarter and finished the period with a 30-19 lead. The Dragons held a 79% field goal percentage in the first quarter, which included hitting all of their three point attempts.

Wong Wei Long stepped up for the Slingers in the second quarter and converted a four point play off a foul by the Dragons’ Guga Batumalai. Guga immediately made up for it however as he sank a three and then made a gorgeous pick and roll for Gavin Edwards, who converted it into a dunk to put his team up 41 to 26 with 6:30 left till the half. Things continued to look bleak for the Slingers as Edwards put in another basket just minutes later which gave the Dragons a 21 point lead with a little over two minutes remaining in the period at 51-30.

The Slingers’ Delvin Goh then tried to start a Slingers resurgence as he rose up and blocked a Julius Armon shot. Then in the dying minutes Donald Singleton put in a huge dunk and got the foul although he was unable to complete the three point play. The Slingers were able to maintain possession off the rebound however and in a moment of déjà vu, Singleton once again jams the ball and is sent to the line. This time he converted the three point play to slash the Dragons’ lead down to 14 at 37 to 51.

Justin Melton was determined to get the last word in before the break however and made a stunning buzzer beater along with a foul which he successfully converted. The Dragons walked into the locker rooms with a comfortable 54 to 37 lead.

The Slingers started the second half with some good field goals and were able to cut the Dragons’ lead down to 43-56. The Dragons cooled off in the third period, but unfortunately for the Slingers, they were also having a bad time from the field and found themselves unable to capitalise. Singleton was quickly racking up the points but it was the Dragons’ Guga again who hit a tough shot at the buzzer which gave the Dragons the 71-49 lead headed into the final ten minutes of the game.

The fourth quarter continued to be all Dragons as they steadily built on an already impressive lead. To add to the Slingers’ woes Jones-Jennings fouled out mid-way into the fourth quarter while leading scorer Singleton sat on four. Despite being in foul trouble for most of the fourth quarter, Singleton still had a good game and led all-scoring with 25 points as well as 11 rebounds at the end of the game.  Unfortunately, none of the other Slingers were able to get into the double digit mark and in the end the hot shooting Dragons grabbed the 93 to 63 victory in front of an appreciative home crowd for their first ABL Friday Basketball game this season. 

“Today we played well and came up with an excellent victory. This is just one victory and we will savor it but we have to prepare for the next game,” Dragons head coach Ariel Vanguardia said after the game. “When I get too happy and too excited we get blown out,” he added jokingly.

Marcus Hubbard has been quite effective
as a swingman for Malaysia.

Rashaad Singleton is a solid inside presence for the Slingers.

The Beermen recorded their sixth straight win after a 68-61 win over the JobStreet.com Singapore Slingers on Sunday at the Singapore Indoor Stadium. The Beermen are on top of the ABL standings table with a 9-3 record for the season, tied with the Indonesia Warriors, but the Beermen are leading 2-1 in their season series. 

Chris Banchero led the Beermen with 19 points, followed by Brian Williams with 11 points and 11 rebounds for the Beermen. Leo Avenido chipped in with 10 points and RJ Rizada added 9 points for the Beermen.

The Beermen were trying to build a big lead right from the first quarter. Using their solid defense and transition offense, the Beermen were able to make a 12-2 run at the end of the first quarter. During that stretch, Brian Williams made a finger roll lay-up and a three pointer which helped the Beermen gain the 24-12 lead after one.

The Slingers continued their offensive struggle into the second quarter. Rashad Jones-Jennings and Rashaad Singleton failed to find their offense in the first half. Leo Avenido made a three-point shot to gave the Beermen a 37-22 lead going into the locker room. At the half, the Beermen were shooting an impressive 6/9 from beyond the arc.

Banchero sparked a run for the Beermen midway through the third quarter. The Fil-Italian guard scored sixth straight points, followed by a lay-up from Rizada and a one handed shot from Asi Taulava, giving the Beermen a 52-32 lead with 2:40 left in the third quarter.

The Slingers started to come alive after Desmond Oh made a three-point shot early in the fourth quarter. Oh's three point shot inspired a late surge by the Slingers which was followed by a quick basket from Morrison and Singleton to cut the Slingers' deficit to 61-46 with 6:23 left.

With 2:33 on the clock, the Slingers were able to get within 8 points after Morrison made a three point shot and Jun Cabatu followed with a two-point shot. Mitchell Folkoff had a chance to get his team within five on their next possesion, but he was unable to knock down his three-point shot. Avenido ended the Slingers' hope after sinking a basket with 1:43 left. With this loss, the Slingers are now on fifth position with a record of 4 wins and 9 losses.

Singleton led the Slingers with 17 points and 11 rebounds plus 4 block shots. In his second game with the Slingers, Morrison had a much better game than in his debut as he finished with 14 points. Jun Cabatu added 10 points while Jones-Jennings recorded a double-double with 10 points and 16 rebounds.

Source: Game recap was compressed and compiled from AseanBasketballLeague.com.

Images: All images are from AseanBasketballLeague.com. 
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