The BTN CLS Knights made a strong push late in the game to secure themselves home court advantage in the first round of playoffs after beating Hong Kong Eastern, 98-97.
Maxie Esho won the game for the Knights with a clutch layup to stun the home team after a hotly contested final quarter.
Both teams started the game hot as they were locked at 15-apiece after nearly six minutes into the game.
After trailing early in the second quarter, Brandon Jawato punched in five-straight points and teammate Doug Herring’s layup gave the Knights lead midway into the second quarter.
However, the lead was quick to taken back after O’Darian Bassett fed Marcus Elliott an alley-opp during a fast break.
Eastern entered half with a slim two-point lead after Bassett drained in a buzzer-beater from perimeter. Both teams shot beyond 50% from the field in two quarters.
The Knights stunned the home team with a quick 8-2 run at the beginning of fourth quarter, led by Herring and Maxie Esho, before Jawato further extended the lead to seven points after making another corner three at the 4:00 mark.
Eastern returned the favor with a 12-4 run, but Esho’s clutch lay up sealed the victory for his team, finishing with 21 points and 14 rebounds.
The visiting team had four guys in double figure, led by Brandon Jawato’s 25 points and eight rebounds. Floor general Doug Herring added 24 points and 11 assists.
Eastern was led by Bassett’s 32 points, making 6-of-11 shots from deep. Michael Holyfield added 12 points, 20 rebounds, and five blocks, while Marcus Elliott flirted with another triple-double, after putting in 19 points, nine rebounds, and nine dimes to the game.
The CLS Knights will now lock the fourth seed of the playoffs after winning their final regular season game, while Hong Kong Eastern play the Wolf Warriors at home to try and secure their seventh spot in the playoffs on the 24th of March.