|A player of Thang Long Warrior (centre) performs in the match between Thang Long Warriors and Hanoi Buffaloes on November 9. – Photo VBA|Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Thang Long Warriors crushed Hanoi Buffaloes 82-57 in the derby match of the playoffs round of the Việt Nam Basketball Association (VBA) League at Hà Nội’s University of Education Gymnasium on November 9.
The Warriors took the lead in the qualifying round and appeared very confident from the start of the game.
With the advantage of playing on home turf, the Warriors quickly proved their strength to lead 7-0 within the first three minutes of the first quarter. Visiting side Buffaloes fought back strongly but still lost to the hosts 12-17.
In the second quarter, key players Jaywuan Hill and Justin Young’s attempts at scoring were blocked by the Buffaloes. However, young aces Đỗ Xuân Nam and Trương Hoàng Trung shone following the new tactics of coach Lee Tao Dana. Nam scored six points and three rebounds in the lane, while Trung made two assists and two steals. At the end of this quarter, the Warriors continued to lead 34-24.
In the third quarter, the Warriors scored points continuously following strong performances by Hill (six points) and Young (six points). However, Trung was forced to leave the game because of a technical foul against Nguyễn Tiến Dương of the Buffaloes. But, the hosts still managed to control the game and won 52-35.
With a significant point gap in the last quarter, coach Todd Purves of the Buffaloes let his reserve players get the opportunity to play. Taking advantage of this, the Warriors extended the score to 82-57 to end the game.
Once again, the Warriors proved their superiority over the Buffaloes, their rival in the same city. Hill of the Warriors won the MVP award with 33 points, 10 rebounds and three steals.
The Buffaloes will face the Warriors again on November 12. – VNS