Basketball

Slingers end Knights’ seven-game winning run

In their past few Asean Basketball League games, Singapore Slingers' loose defence and sloppy passes have seen them squandering big leads that also sometimes cost them the match.

But, yesterday at the OCBC Arena, the Slingers held on to a 20-point advantage they gained in the second quarter to beat CLS Knights Indonesia 95-76.

Their victory ended the Knights' seven-game winning streak, the longest by any team this season.

Slingers coach Neo Beng Siang said: "I'm pretty happy with the result.

"We came off strong at the start and stuck together throughout the whole game, which was really good. We need to stay focused every game and play as a team."

In a tight first quarter that saw the Slingers two points behind initially, they tightened their defence and increased their attacking intensity to widen their 22-20 lead.

The Slingers' imports John Fields, Xavier Alexander and Jerran Young contributed 25 of the Slingers' 30 points in the second quarter.

Leading 52-32 at half-time, the Slingers maintained their intensity and held on to win the match, despite the Knights taking the last quarter 21-18 through imports Maxie Esho and Douglas Herring.

Slingers' guard Desmond Oh said the second quarter was the key to their win.

PRAISE

"We played hard today. We did well, so I'm very happy about it," said Oh, who also praised teammate Young's performance.

"The second quarter was the key. We led by 20 points and that really brought us through the third and fourth quarters."

Young was the top scorer with 36 points. He was followed by Fields with 24 and Alexander with 21.

The win improved their win-loss record to 9-6, and they moved up one position to fourth, behind Saigon Heat (10-6). The Knights (9-8) remain sixth. - LAURA CHIA

Basketball