The Mono Vampire Basketball Club became the first team to steal a victory at the Nanhai District Gymnasium during game one of the semifinals, after they downed the Chong Son Kung Fu Basketball Club who previously went unbeaten at home during the regular season.

The Thailand league champions recorded 29 assists during the game, always seemingly able to find the open man and making easy buckets.

“I think we did a good job in staying poised and playing as a team when we got down in the first half,” said Jason Brickman, whose squad trailed by as many as 12 points during the first quarter, but they managed to regroup and stay aggressive after a quick timeout called by coach Doug Marty.

Since then, Mono Vampire never looked back and finished the game strong, mainly led by Brickman, who recorded 25 points and 15 assists and was awarded Player of the Game by the league.

“We got some stops and were able to make a run and take control of the game,” added Brickman. However, the league’s assist-leader is not at all satisfied, but is already looking to finish the series in game two when they play in Bangkok. “We need to play the same way and come out with a lot of energy on our home court. It’s important for us to get off to a good start,” stressed the Filipino-American guard.

On the other hand, Mike Singletary also emphasized the importance of the team getting good defensive stops down the stretch. “I think we just need to continue to play our game and make sure we play defense. If we play defense, and able to get out and run, I think we will be okay,” said the team leading-scorer.

Even though Singletary is averaging about 36 points and 11 rebounds per game in all of the three games against Kung Fu, he acknowledged the Chinese team bring the best out of him every time.

Kung Fu does a great job at trying to limit my touches and makes me work for everything. I just embrace the challenge and I have great teammates that help me as well,” the American import continued, “We’re playing the number one team so they will be ready to play too.”  

During all these games, Kung Fu assigned their best defensive stopper Caelan Tiongson to guard Singletary, and the latter has nothing but praise for his tough opponent on this playoff series. “He’s a tough competitor and makes it tough on me to score.”

It’s also the debut ABL season for Vampire’s all-around forward, and although they are one win away from going into the finals, he seems to enjoying himself at this competitive playoffs moment.

“I feel like it’s been great,” said Singletary. “I love the fact that every team is playing as hard as they can and it makes it fun to play against that. I love that the playoffs brings out the best in everybody.”

Mono Vampire will be looking to close out the series against the top-seeded Chong Son squad at the Stadium 29 in Bangkok, Thailand on April 18 (Wednesday).