Coming off an impressive effort against Mighty Sports (Philippines), the Singapore Slingers couldn’t conjure enough energy to keep up with the deadly outside shooting of the Seoul Samsung Thunders. The home team of the Merlion Cup loses out the Bronze Medal game with a 94-55 loss.
The Korean squad finished with 5 players scoring in double digits, with their three pointing that brought down the loss on the Slingers. The Thunders shot 14/33 from behind the arc. The Slingers who seemed fatigued and got limited performances had to rely on Xavier Alexander who was able to put in 22 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists, and 4 steals.
It was a game of runs in the first quarter but the Seoul Samsung Thunders had upper hand over the Singapore Slingers leading 23-13 after the first 10 minutes. Thunders’ Ricardo Ratliffe ripped the game open with a personal 6-0 run, but the Slingers responded with Justin Howard and Xavier Alexander combining for a counter 10-2 run. Ratliffe scored 10 points for the Thunders, but got into foul trouble early and the Korean needed an additional punch from Moon Tae-Young who scored 9 points of his own later.
Lim Dong Seop cooked up the pace for the Thunders by making two three pointers in a row to start the second quarter. However, it was the defense of the Seoul Samsung Thunders that was the difference maker. The Slingers were held to only one point in the first five minutes of the period. Jeff Viernes joined in on the scoring in the second quarter with 6 points but the Slingers would still trail 45-29. Familiar Singaporean local scorers like Wong Wei Long and Wu Qingde were kept silent but the home crowd were entertained with 4 points from high-flying youngster Kelvin Lim.
Emotions ran high as expected in a game with a bronze medal on the line. An unsportsmanlike foul was called on Moon Tae-Young and was followed not long after with a technical foul on Slingers’ Assistant Coach Michael Johnson as the game continued to get more and more physical. Seoul Samsung Thunder ran into a bump when star Lim Dong Seop got injured on a shot attempt. Lim had to be carried off the floor, but the Thunders rolled on regardless leading 76-49 at the end of three. Kim Tae Hyung did not play a single minute in the first half but came in ready to play, lighting up the Slinger’s defense for 11 points on 3 three point shots.
The Thunders continued to have their way shooting the ball and cruised their way to securing a spot on the podium of the Merlion Cup in the fourth quarter. Both teams fielded all-local line ups to close out the last 3 minutes of the game to wrap up each other’s campaign in the 2016 Merlion Cup.
The Singapore Slingers end up with a 4th place standing in the 2016 Merlion Cup with this loss, while the Seoul Samsung Thunders take home the Bronze medal.