Singapore Armed Forces Sports Association (SAFSA) failed to salvage a win in the final day of the FIBA Asia Champions Cup East Inter-Sub Zone Qualifiers.
The Singaporean club team took on the other winless team in the first game of the double-header, but failed to break through and suffered a heartbreaking 81-78 decision against a more experienced Punjab Police side.
SAFSA led by as much as 10 points at the half, after a terrific second quarter, but saw their lead hacked down to just two to open the final period. Punjab Police continued to push back and took a 76-67 lead with 2:38 remaining in the game.
However, SAFSA had one final run left in the tank, racing back to cut the deficit down to just two with 31 seconds left. They also had one final attempt to tie and send the game into overtime, but in the end, inexperience spelled doom for the Singaporean side.
Leon Kwek finally got some much needed help in the person of Delvin Goh, who played his first game in the Qualifying tournament after participating in a different tourney in Medan, Indonesia during the past week.
The return of the 6-foot-5 Goh gave the Singapore side some much needed size and heft in the paint against the physical Indian team, finishing with 19 points, 11 rebounds, and two blocked shots.
Kwek, who was lone bright spot for SAFSA in the previous two outings, once again shined with 20 points, five assists, and four steals, while shooting 53 percent from the field. No other player managed to score in double-digits.
Both teams paraded all-local squads, and saw both Hitech Basketball Club and the Fubon Braves easily qualify to be a part of the final eight teams in the 2019 FIBA Asia Champions Cup later this year as the best two squads in the qualifying tournament.
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