Slingers overcome torrid start to down CLS Knights Indonesia
The Singapore Slingers snatched their third victory of the season, defeating CLS Knights Indonesia 79-71 in Surabaya, Indonesia, last night.
And they had swingman Xavier Alexander to thank for, yet again.
He topped the scoresheet with a game-high of 39 points, to go with his 16 rebounds and three assists.
The Slingers got off to a torrid start, however, and trailed by 2-15 after just five minutes.
But Alexander was on hand to haul them back into the game, scoring the next seven points.
Local shooting guard Ng Han Bin also put in a shift, downing two three-pointers in the first quarter, which ended 22-15 in the Knights' favour.
The Slingers came back strongly after that, and reduced the deficit to 37-40 at half-time.
After a hard-fought third quarter, Neo Beng Siang's men finally had their noses in front, leading 61-56.
It was a lead they would hold on to until the end of the match.
This was the Slingers' second win against the Knights this season, having overcome them 77-66 last month.
After the match, Slingers coach Neo purred over Alexander's display.
He said: "Alexander really stepped up big for us today, with good two- and three-point shots.
"I'm definitely happy with the win. Everyone did very well and stuck together, especially in defence."
However, Neo was also upset over the team's sloppy start.
He said: "I could say that maybe it's because of the warm-up, but there should be no excuse.
"They didn't stick to the game plan at the start, which was to shut them (Knights) down on the three-point shots. We let them slip away."
Up next for the Slingers next Wednesday are Hong Kong Eastern, whom they lost to just last Sunday.
Neo said: "It's going to be tough playing away, but I'm not looking for revenge.
"We might face manpower issues but I'm hoping that everyone will step up."