NYSI Basketball: NTU edged pass SP in a tightly contested game to emerge as 3rd-Runner Up.

NTU came out victorious against the darkhorse SP.
via Merlissa Kee/Locker Room

“This is their 2nd meeting in the league, SP came out as winner in a close fight as they gave NTU with their first loss when they first met in the round robin. Now SP without their Key Player #5 Thng Yong-An, will NTU make full use of this opportunity to avenge their loss for a 3rd-Runner up?”

Both teams had a slow start, had many bad passes, had poor shooting, and several broken set plays.
 
As NTU’s #41 Leon Chia suffered a minor injury and had to be seated out, they lost one of their key scorers in the first quarter. In the last 4 minutes of the first quarter, SP had a good “9-0” run sparked by #33 Randall Fang, he ended the quarter with a 3 point basket and hence, giving SP a 7 point lead. (6-13)
 
SP started off the 2nd quarter with a “3 point” basket to make it a 10 point lead. However, this lead did not stay for long as NTU’s strong defense and hardworking defensive effort turned the tables around. SP could not handle the pressure, thus, they started to throw the ball away and take contested tough shots.
 
NTU uses this chance to make a huge run as NTU’s #13 Darryl Lee scored a 3 point shot to provide a 11-0 run. SP managed to score some tough baskets but still was not good enough to get back the lead. NTU’s #4 SIM JIA HAO scored a 3 point in the last few seconds to end the quarter with a bang. (28-25)
 
Since the start of the 2nd half, SP changed the pace of the game offensively and defensively. SP tried to contain NTU by using a full-court press to slow them down and take early shots to get back into the game. SP’s #2 Jolo Rafael scored a spectacular “alley-oop” but landed in an awkward position, suffering a bad ankle injury. This incident forced SP to play slower due to the loss of versatile player #2 Jolo Rafael.
 
 With a score of (48-46), Teams had been trading baskets for the first few minutes, the score margin was always close, up to 2-3 points of difference. Only in the last 2 minutes and 50 seconds, NTU managed to pull away with a 6 point lead. But the lead was not comfortable to win the game.
 
SP’s #11 Dillion Yap came up with a huge offensive rebound and scored the basket with a free-throw on the line. Dillion Yap scored the last 5 points. However, it wasn’t enough to tie the game.
 
With the last possession in SP’s hands, they needed to convert a 3 point basket to bring the game to overtime. However, they were unable to do so and NTU managed to hang on and secure the rebound for a win. End Score of the game was (63-60).
 
NTU clinched a 3rd-Runner up position in the NYSI IHL Basketball League.

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