In the first of two meetings between the Formosa Dreamers and Macau Black Bears, it was the Taiwanese squad that drew first blood, hashing out a 99-89 win.
Malcolm Miller found his rhythm early and was able to finish an all-around game of 30 points, six rebounds, seven assists, and three steals. Tevin Glass also had a huge game as the imposing forward normed 25 points and 16 boards. Fellow World Import Will Artino submitted 14 points and 10 rebounds.
The highly-contested ball game featured each of the teams’ big three. Formosa’s Miller, Glass, and Artino were up against Macau’s Anthony Tucker, Mikh McKinney, and Ryan Watkins. McKinney, who has been hot in his last couple of games, continued his scoring spree with 28 points on 12-for-20 shooting.
McKinney’s basket with just over two minutes left made it a four-point game with Formosa holding on to an 87-83 advantage. But the Dreamers responded with a game-clinching 8-0 run, highlighted by an and1-play from Artino to extend the lead to 12 points under a minute remaining. The Dreamers put the exclamation point with back-to-back dunks from Glass and Artino.
Though the Black Bears trio combined for 76 points, the rest of the team were only able to produce 13 points. The Dreamers, on the other hand, had 30 points from their local players. Kenny Chien chipped in with 14 points while Tien Lei played significantly off the bench with 10 points in just under six minutes. For Macau, no other player reached double-figures outside of its big three. Liu Zihao was the closest with nine points.
The Dreamers shot a blistering 55 percent from the floor while holding down the Black Bears to 42 percent. They also had the edge in rebounding, 43-35, and in assists, 28-16. Though they committed 15 turnovers that Macau converted to 20 points, their hot shooting powered them down the stretch.
Formosa has now won four straight and rises to a 14-6 record. Macau settles for an 11-8 record for eighth place in the standings. The two squads will go at it once again on Sunday.