Story by Daniel Yeo/Red Sports. Photos by Chan Hua Zheng/Red Sports.
Tan Chin Tuan Sports Hall, Anglo-Chinese School (Barker), Tuesday, June 19, 2018 — Thanks to a full-court press which came in clutch, Singapore Polytechnic (SP) was able to escape Anglo-Chinese School Oldham (ACSO) with a 43–40 win in the National Youth Sports Institute League.
With this win, SP now possess a win-loss record of 2-0, having beaten Singapore University of Technology and Design in their earlier contest. ACSO, dropping their opener, are now 0-1.
For SP, Mei Ling (SP #81) was the only player in double-figures, with a team-high 12 points. As for ACSO, Neo Ying Qi (ACSO #2) led the way with a game-high 18 points and four makes from three-point land.
Both teams looked to be starting off slowly on the defensive end, as some passive boxouts resulted on plenty of second and third chances for either team. It would be SP, though, who capitalized, taking a seven-point lead into the second quarter.
Although they weren’t pretty baskets, both teams doggedly pursued every chance to score inside, trading baskets till the first half of basketball ended with SP up 29–23.
The third half saw both teams picking it up with a renewed energy, especially SP, as they began picking up ACSO full-court with a man press. SP’s bigs, in particular, were using their size and length to make plays on the ball, pressuring ACSO in both the paint and on the perimeter.
That didn’t seem to stop ACSO, though, and with Neo Ying Qi (ACSO #2) orchestrating the offence in the half-court set, both teams battled to a 10-10 quarter. Not only was she calling the plays, she was also getting buckets, scoring eight of ACSO’s 10 in the quarter.
SP were still trying to find a balance between taking their looks on the perimeter and under the basket, and whilst doing so, ACSO managed to creep up and cut into the already-slim lead.
But, down the stretch, SP were able to take advantage of what looked like a tiring ACSO team with some backdoor cuts in transition. Their use of the full-court press also stopped ACSO from advancing the ball past the time-line several times, and although they may not have scored, they were able to burn valuable time off the clock and stave off a ACSO comeback. The final score: a close 43–40 win for SP.
SP Captain Tiana (SP #35) remained optimistic that her team could perform better: “Today’s game was not our best game. I think, maybe, it just wasn’t our day…I think it’s an improvement from our first game, still, we had more communication and our defence was slightly better, but we still need to improve.”
She also took time to compliment the ACSO team, saying: “The opponent is very strong, their fighting spirit is very strong, and even though they were trailing the whole game, they kept fighting, and they almost caught up with us at the end. I think, for us, we were also quite scared that they were going to beat us at the end, so it was stressful.”
After ACSO’s first game of the season, captain Ee Leng (ACSO #11) shared her thoughts on the NYSI League: “It’s good, I think it gives us exposure to different teams in this competition, as well as learning opportunities to help us grow as a team.”
She also shared on the team’s close loss, adding: “I think some of the players definitely played a big portion of the game, and that was one of the reasons why, towards the end, people grew tired, but I think everyone gave a very good fight, regardless whether it was our team or the opponents’ team. We’re happy with the results regardless.”
ACSO will travel to National University of Singapore on Friday, June 22, for their next game, while SP will host Nanyang Polytechnic on July 3. Both games will tip-off at 7:30pm.
Scoring by Quarter
ACSO v SP
1st Q: 10–17
2nd Q: 13–12 (23–29)
3rd Q: 10–10 (33–39)
4th Q: 7–4 (40–43)
Neo Ying Qi (#2) – 18 points, 4 3PM
Mei Ling (#81) – 12 points
Neo Ying Qi (#2), Gerilyn Wah (#3), Megha Joshi (#4), Hazel Lim (#5), Sharlene Tjakrawinata (#8), Eunice Lim (#9), Ang Kah Hui (#10), Tan Ee Leng (#11), Shanice Chia (#14), Dora Yeo (#15), Yvonne See (#24)
Gladys (#0), Olivia (#1), Su (#3), Amanda Ong (#4), Evin (#7), Qi Yi (#8), Swee Tze (#9), Amanda Phua (#17), Hui Yi (#19), Germaine (#20), Liying (#21), Luo Fei (#23), Xing Yue (#24), Sya (#25), Diyana (#27), Tiana (#35), Casey (#41), Mei Ling (#81), May (#99)
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