A less-favored Mono Vampire Basketball Club successfully held off the Singapore Slingers, 79-81, for first their road win of the ASEAN Basketball League (ABL) season.
Mono Vampire has always been a tough visitor for the two-time runner-ups Singapore even back in the Thai club’s forgettable first season in the ABL. Previous four games between these two teams at OCBC Arena all came down to the wire with two victories for each side.
Neither team was able to maintain a commanding lead over the other as they traded baskets all game long. The Slingers managed to have their biggest lead of the game at 67-60 early in the fourth quarter, but the excellent defense of Jason Brickman (17 points, seven assists, and three steals) and company limited the Slingers to only 14 markers during the final period.
Thai-American Freddie Goldstein scored seven points in the contest but all in the last eight minutes of the game including a clutch go-ahead basket with 31 seconds left to play.
Singapore had an opportunity to tie it right after that but import Jerran Young (16 points, three assists, two steals) missed a crucial free throw. However, Brickman also missed one of his on the other end.
Down two with five seconds on the clock, the Slingers’ Xavier Alexander (19 points, five boards, and eight assists) missed a lay-up after a full court run to force overtime and the tip-in from teammate John Fields, despite going in, was called off.
Fields finished the game with 27 points, eight rebounds and three blocks on 62 percent shooting but he also committed six turnovers. Delvin Goh struggled with only seven markers (25 percent FG) along with seven rebounds while Larry Liew contributed eight points off the bench.
Mike Singletary was the main guy for Mono in the win with 14 rebounds, four assists and three steals to compliment 23 points including five made outside shots (62 percent). Malcolm White also scored 23 points and seven boards. The duo was decisive for the visiting team to outrebounded the Slingers which led to the gap in second chance points.
With the loss, Singapore has dropped to 7-5 and missed the chance to go to second on the standing. Mono will remain at the 9th place (2-8) but this win might have just started the resurrection of the Vampire team that was one game away from the crown last year.
Coach Douglas Marty will look to confirm this when his team hosts Westport Malaysia Dragons (4-3) on January 16, while Singapore Slingers will travel to Surabaya for a 7 PM tip-off on Sunday against the CLS Knights.
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