MPL D League Playoffs- Melaka 96ers and PRG Warriors progress to the Semi Finals
Earlier in the day, Seven Star would pull off the slim 63-61 win over Verve Club to move onto the 7th/8th placing game where they will face Farmco Knight. The result seals Verve final ranking at the ninth spot
Melaka 96ers 66 New Ampang Youth Club 55
The sixth place Melaka pulls off the upset 66-55 over the the third placed NAYC to qualify for the semi finals of the 2018 Malaysia Pro League Development League.
Melaka would have a full line up at their disposal with Wee Joon Lock returning to action
The first quarter would be a shoot out between both team’s young lead scorers, Syahrul Ridzuan (NAYC) and Tan Wei Jie who would both score eight apiece. A three pointer by Wong Wee Seng, the league leader in steals would ensure Melaka take the slim two point advantage at the end of the first with a score of 18-16
Tempers would flare midway through the second as both Wee Joon Lock and Jagadhess Rao Marimuthu would be slapped with unsportsmanlike fouls following heated words after a foul by Melaka. NAYC’s Ho Yeow Loong would later be called for his team’s second unsportsmanlike foul in the second quarter for tripping Wee Yong Gan on a breakaway attempt. Melaka would take advantage of the flustered NAYC with the league leading scorer, Tan Wei Jie scoring a three pointer to give Melaka a nine point 33-24 lead going to the break
Back to back three pointers would see Melaka stretch the lead to 13 early in the third. NAYC’s defense would tighten their defense as they went on a 11-0 run to cut the lead to two off a three pointer by Jagadhess Rao Marimuthu with a minute remaining in the third. It would be NAYC’s first made three pointer after missing their first 16 attempts of the game. Tan Wei Jie would finally come alive for Melaka, replying with a corner three to give Melaka the five point 42-37 lead going into the final quarter. Melaka would only be able to make three field goals in the third
Melaka would start the fourth quarter on a 6-0 run quickly regaining their double digit lead. NAYC’s captain Kot Soon Peng would cut it to nine with an inside basket before Tan Wei Jie would once again quench NAYC’s comeback spirit with his fifth three of the game with seven minutes remaining. Melaka would not relinquish the double digit lead for the rest of the game as NAYC’s cold shooting form from outside derived them of any chance of a comeback.
NAYC would dominate the boards outrebounding Melaka 60-46, but poor shooting (29%) from the field and free throw line (20%) would end their championship aspirations. Melaka’s defensive strategy of locking down NAYC top scorer Syahrul Ridzuan proved effective with Syahrul failing to score any points after the first quarter.
Melaka would be led by lead scorer Tan Wei Jie’s 19 points. He would shoot an efficent 50% from the field with five made three pointers. Veteran guard, Wong Wee Seng would also have a huge game and earned player of the game honors with 10 points, 16 rebounds and 4 steals.
Melaka will go on to face the second seed KL Dragons in the semi finals while NAYC move onto the 5th/6th placing playoff game.
PRG Warriors 72 Red Baron 59
The fourth seed PRG Warriors defeat the fifth seed Red Baron 72-59 to move onto the semi finals of the 2018 Malaysia Pro League Development League.
PRG would be boosted by the return of lead rebounder, John Wong and the addition of National Team guard, Ong Wei Yong to their line up.
PRG’s active defensive press would force Red Baron to 10 turnovers in the first quarter alone . A highlight no look pass from Lewis Inpik for a Thea Zhong Shin layup and Tan Wen Gio’s And1 play would give PRG the five point 19-14 lead at the end of the first
It would be Inpik again making his presence felt in the second quarter with back to back threes giving PRG an early ten point lead. Red Baron would turn to young big man, Yap Zhi Wei who would go on his own personal run, cutting the lead to five with a series of post move baskets. The lead would remain at five with the score at 35-30 going into the halftime break
Red Baron start the third quarter with a strong inside move by Tan Wei Long cutting the lead to three before PRG’s lead scoring duo Liew Kar Choon and Tan Wen Gio took control again stretching the lead to as high as 14 off a three pointer by Tan Wen Gio, who would end the night with five threes. Red Baron would be able to refocus, going on a 6-0 run to cut the lead to eight, led by Ng Zhen Yu with four points. The score would be 50-42 going into the fourth
It would be none other than Liew Kar Choon and Tan Wen Gio killing Red Baron’s hopes early with back to back threes stretching the lead to as high as 15 early in the fourth. Goh Yan Qing would do his best keep Red Baron in the game, with five straight points cutting the lead to 10 off a three point play basket before Liew Kar Choon would once again hit a three right at the next play effectively killing off Red Baron’s hopes of a comeback. The final buzzer sounded with the resounding 72-59 victory for PRG Warriors
PRG’s scoring duo of Liew Kar Choon and Tan Wen Gio would score 21 points apiece to take PRG into the semi finals, where they will go onto the face the league leaders, NS Matrix
It would be Liew Kar Choon who would earn the player of the game honors with 21 points and 6 rebounds. Despite struggling with his three point shooting early, he would score three from downtown in the fourth quarter which were crucial in breaking Red Baron’s momentum.
Red Baron’s MPL debut would come to an end with a poor 30% shooting night, making only 3/27 from three despite outrebounding the smaller PRG 62-47. Red Baron will move to the 5th/6th placing game where they will face NAYC
Source: ASEAN Sports | Click Here