Macau Black Bears 103 Fubon Braves 89
The Macau Black Bears ended their 2018 Seri Mutiara Cup on a positive note, defeating the Fubon Braves from Taiwan 103-89 to finish in seventh place.
Macau overcame a slow first quarter, crawling their way back from an early nine-point deficit before taking over the lead for good late in the first quarter after a Mikh McKinney jumper. Macau would hold firm for the rest of the game, keeping Fubon away comfortably before coasting to a 103-89 win over the SBL team.
Macau was led by 2017-2018 ABL Heritage Import MVP Mikh McKinney, who finished with 39 points, five assists and six steals on 60 percent shooting. He ended his tournament averaging 26 points per game in four appearances.
Malaysia Matrix 99 Hong Kong Eastern 88
Hong Kong Eastern’s Seri Mutiara Cup did not end well, as the team blew an 18-point lead to Malaysia Matrix, ultimately falling 88-99 and finishing their tournament in sixth place.
Eastern appeared to be unstoppable in the first quarter with Samuel Deguara scoring 10 points on 5-of-5 shooting, racing out to an early 16-point lead by the end of the opening period.
Unfortunately for the Hong Kong squad, cold shooting and fatigue began to show, especially on Deguara’s part, as the big man struggled to contain Matrix’s big three line up of JJ Avilla, Anthony Walker and Jaleel Roberts.
The game was close until midway through the fourth quarter, before Jeff Viernes hit a jumper for Matrix which gave them a 10-point cushion. There were a few late jittery moments for Matrix with Walker and Roberts fouling out, however, Matrix’s Liew Wei Yuong erased all hopes of an Eastern comeback with a basket and foul from Deguara.
Deguara led Eastern throughout the game, finishing with 32 points, 15 rebounds and four blocks on 13-of-15 shooting.
In the semi-final matchups, KCC Egis (KBL) defeated the Texas All Stars in a thrilling 100-96 encounter, while the Illawarra Hawks (NBL Australia) dismantled the BC Partizan Youth Team 87-52 to set up a South Korea versus Australia showdown for the 2018 Seri Mutiara Cup championship.