Story by Lim De Jun/Red Sports. Photos by Benedict Yeo/Red Sports.
Singapore Polytechnic Indoor Sports Arena, Tuesday, June 13, 2017 — Hosts Singapore Polytechnic (SP) went down 44-45 against visitors Singapore Management University (SMU) despite a clutch shot with 30 seconds left.
Peter Soo (SMU #4) had a game-high 22 points while Jonathan Teo (#10) led SP with 10.
It was the opening game for both teams in the National Youth Sports Institute (NYSI) Basketball League.
Ng Yee Jian (SMU #7) started the game with a steal and passing it to Ka Jin (SMU #24) for an easy basket. Benny Yeo (SP #44) then knocked down a 3-pointer shot.
It was clear that SMU had a size advantage over SP and they had good communication, constantly calling for plays and screens.
Bryant Tan (SMU #14) made another steal and went for the fastbreak layup but Jonathan Teo (SP#10) responded with a base-line cut and finished with a layup.
SP had good ball movement and they played their offense slowly. SMU had many missed shots, allowing SP to take a 13-8 lead after the first quarter.
Big man Brandon Ong (SMU #91) cut through the defense for a finger roll layup in the middle to start the scoring in the second quarter. SP’s own big man, Liau Li Jiang (SP #32), then made an assist to Tan Yih Jing (SP #14) for the contested under basket. Li Jiang then went on to make a base-line cut to finish with a reverse layup.
Warren Chua (SP #3) knocked down a 3-pointer shot right after the possession changed. This increased the team’s morale and their bench started to cheer for their team.
SP’s point guard Benny Yeo (SP #44) awed the crowd with his handles as SMU had some difficulty defending him. The quarter concluded with SP still in the lead at 22-19.
Peter Soo (SMU #4) went on to knock down a 3-pointer shot but Jonathan Teo (SP#10) responded with a jumper at the free-throw line.
SP started to have better communication, tighter defense and better ball movement and they took a slim 32-30 lead into the final quarter.
The final quarter started with a fake shot by Tan Yih Jing (SP #14) to give himself the easy basket. He also went for a contested layup against two defenders.
Anthony Tan (SP #16) then made a pocket pass to Chua Yi Xuan (SP #7) who finished with a wide open under basket.
With 5 minutes left, Benedict Lim (SMU #9) made a 3-pointer shot to give hims team a two-point lead over SP.
With 30 seconds left on the clock, Warren Chua (SP #3) made a clutch 3-pointer shot at the sound of the 24-second shot clock buzzer to give SP a one-point lead.
SMU called for a time out right after the shot. When they came back on, Koh Bu Jin (SMU #23) cut through SP’s defense and made a reverse layup to give SP a close 45-44 win.
SMU captain Ng Yee Jian (#7) said, “We were off since the last SUniG (Singapore University Games) season which resulted in us not being mentally prepared for such games. We had new players on board our team and this also made us unprepared due to nervousness. In addition, we were lacking in such competitive games which made it tougher for us to keep up such an intensity.
“NYSI (Basketball League) serves as a good preparation for our upcoming SUniG as it allows us to gain more exposure by playing other teams which we may not face.
“SP put up a good fight. They were much more physical than us and they had more energy than us. They had much better shots than us and they played really well.”
SP captain Tan Yih Jing (SP #14) said, “Our team played well offensively despite the small hiccups. However, our defense were not up to our standard as we failed to hustle for every ball which killed us at the end.
“NYSI is a really good platform for our team to gain more experience and acts as a preparation for our younger players to familiarise with the intensity of the game.
“SMU put up a really tough fight. It was very clear that they had size to their advantage. It was tough trying to keep up physically but I am really proud of my team as they never gave up and still put on a great fight.
“Our team have to further familiarise our plays, play more aggressive offense and defense. One thing that we are lacking in is our rebounds and box outs, which we will further improve on for our next game. All in all, our team did really well for our first game and I hope we can keep up the good work for the other games.”
Scoring by Quarter
SP vs SMU
1st Q: 13-8
2nd Q: 22-19 (9-11)
3rd Q: 32-30 (10-11)
4th Q: 44-45 (12-15)
Jonathan Teo (#10) – 10 pts (1 x 3-pts)
Tan Yih Jing (#14) – 9 pts
Peter Soo (#4) – 22 pts (4 x 3-pts)
Koh Bu Jin (#23) – 6 pts
Daniel Leong (#0), Warren Chua Sheng Lin (#3), Chua Yi Xuan (#7), Jonathan Teo (#10), Dilan Koh Zhi Yu (#13), Tan Yih Jing (#14), Anthony Tan Jun Rong (#16), Dion Tan (#18), Ken Ang (#23), Liau Li Jiang (#32), Benny Yeo (#44), Xiao Yu Tong (#88).
Alex Liew (#2), Peter Soo (#4), Ng Yee Jian (#7), Benedict Lim (#9), Shaun Lim (#11), Wilfred Tan (#13), Bryant Tan (#14), Wei Chang (#14purple), Dominic Lim (#16), Mikhael (#18), Koh Bu Jin (#23), Ka Jin (#24), Brandon Ong (#91).
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