By Lim Yong Teck/Red Sports
National University of Singapore, Monday, September 14, 2015 — The positions of power forward and centre were the determining factor in National University of Singapore’s (NUS) 49-43 victory over rivals Singapore Institute of Management (SIM) in their final round-robin game of the Singapore University Games (SUniG) women’s basketball championship.
Four of the best frontcourt players in the championship went head to head, and based on individual numbers, SIM had the upper hand, if one considers contributions to the scoreboard.
SIM’s Zoe Eng (#18) finished with 17 points, and team-mate Priscilla Han (#13) finished with 12 points. In the case of NUS, Edna Lim (#9) had five points, while Alanna Lim (#19) had none.
But the NUS frontcourt duo had a more pivotal impact at the boards, finishing with 12 and 19 rebounds respectively. Of Lim’s (#9) 12 boards, seven were offensive.
The pair’s dominance on the boards, along with Charlene Sia’s (#8) hot shooting form, proved to be the game changer, and overshadowed their SIM counterparts, Eng (#18) and Han (#13), who had 14 and 10 boards.
“Both teams played really well, but I think we really wanted it more and I suppose we had better mental preparation,” said Lim (#19), who also recorded five steals and four blocks.
“Charlene’s three-pointers gave us a morale booster and our confidence went sky-high, and in turn, I think it made SIM a little dejected. But we did have a shaky start and maybe we were nervous.
“But we slowly got back into the game and we had the lead, so we could slowly swing the ball and drag the time.”
Both teams went back-and-forth against each other throughout the game, with NUS building a 10-point lead at the half, to SIM holding them to a 2-12 scoreline in the third quarter.
However, an increasingly rushed offence was the bane for SIM, causing several defensive errors and turnovers, which ultimately led to their downfall in the closing quarter.
“Definitely our defence,” said Eng (#18) on the loss.
“We allowed them to capitalize on the loopholes of our defence and shoot easy jumpers to establish an easy lead over us.
“They were also able to execute their plays at ease which resulted in a more consistent performance.”
Despite the loss, the SIM captain was praises for the NUS team.
“Both teams put up a good fight, but kudos to team NUS for the well-rounded efforts!”
With the win, NUS have secured a berth in the final, which will be played at 7 p.m. on Thursday, September 17. They will go up against defending champions and powerhouses Nanyang Technological University (NTU), who had earlier beaten them 71-35.
“I think that we’re the underdogs and now that we’ve made it into the final, there is no burden or anything,” said Lim (#19).
“I think we might actually put up a good fight against them, because we did come close to them in the first quarter, and nothing is impossible.”
The third-year Arts and Social Science student added, “We’re just going to fight hard, and hopefully, miracles can happen.”
Score by quarter
SIM vs NUS
1st quarter: 12-14
2nd quarter: 8-16 (20-30)
3rd quarter: 12-2 (32-32)
4th quarter: 11-17 (43-49)
Zoe Eng (#18) – 17 points (1 x 3-pointer)
Han Meiqi, Priscilla (#13) – 12 points
Sia Si Qin Charlene (#8) – 19 points (5 x 3-pointers)
Freda Chua Zhi Yun (#11) – 12 points
Tung Kah Hui (#1), Pham Hoang Lan (#3), Jacqueline Tan (#4), Lim Yu Xuan Melissa (#5), Roxanne Yeo Yee Ling (#6), Wong Jing Ying (#7), Jowilly Siew Mei Kit (#8), Janice Ong Chin Hwee (#9), Ngo Pei Shan, Debbie (#10), Lee Xin Yu (#11), Tan Ying Yi (#12), Han Meiqi, Priscilla (#13), Zoe Eng (#18), Wong Shu Qing (#22), Tan Si Hua Crystal (#23)
Tan Hsiang Yi (#4), Tan Jia Qi (#5), Sherlin Toh (#6), Lee Xin Ru (#7), Sia Si Qin Charlene (#8), Lim Yi Jieh Edna (#9), Ong Jia Le (#10), Freda Chua Zhi Yun (#11), Tan Yu Xuan (#12), Ong Jia Min (#13), Oon Zi Gui (#15), Leah-Diane Warden Xiu Yu (#17), Lim Rui Jia Alanna (#19), Chee Shi Ya (#21), Thng Kai Ting Brenda (#79)
More photos next page