Kwek and Oh Lead Slingers Over Long Lions to Claim Top Spot
The Singapore Slingers are back at being number one.
After a minor setback in their previous game, the Slingers took care of business on their home floor, beating the visiting Hong Kong Eastern Long Lions, 82-72, on Sunday at the OCBC Arena in Singapore.
Leon Kwek and Desmond Oh earned Co-Player of the Game honors with their outstanding all-around performances. Kwek poured in 19 points on amazing 60 percent shooting clip. He also had 8 rebounds and did his work on defensive end with 4 steals.
“It’s a bounce back game for us. We came from a flat game against the Philippines,” Kwek said after their victory. “I felt that I had to come out on strong to give back to the fans who have spent the afternoon [watching] us. This is all for the fans today.”
Oh meanwhile was a sparkplug off the bench. He ended up with 13 points and 3 assists. He also delivered a dagger triple late in the ball game.
With Slingers were clinging to a 76-70 lead with a minute remaining, Oh hit a gutsy three-pointer to give his team a 9-point cushion. Unlike their first meeting in Hong Kong, there was no comeback by the Long Lions this time around.
“I was just there at the right time. I was wide open,” Oh humbly said. “I made a big shot.”
Kwek, Wong Wei Long, and imports Justin Howard and Xavier Alexander have been the usual suspects in Singapore’s success. This time, the veteran Oh delivered the timely buckets that his team needed.
“We all know I’m a defensive player. When it comes to offense, I’m just doing my best to help the team out. I didn’t really look for the points today,” Oh mentioned.
“There’s nothing more to say about him. He’s the soul and heart of our team. He’s the captain,” Kwek beamed talking about his longtime teammate. “He just brings everything to us be it a good day or bad day. This day, it was the offense. This win is for him.”
For Hong Kong, Marcus Elliott and Tyler Lamb each had 20 points. However, their output was not enough as they suffered their second defeat of the season, both at the hands of the Slingers.
Singapore moves up to first place with an 8-2 win-loss card while the Long Lions are now tied with Alab Pilipinas with their identical 5-2 tallies.
“We fell short last season. Now we’re 10 games before the playoffs. For sure we’re going back to the finals,” Kwek firmly said.