Tom Kleinschmidt hit a key shot late in the fourth quarter as the Toshiba Brave Thunders edged the Aisin Sea Horses 75-73 in the decisive Game 5 to win their second JBL Super League title and first in five years. Toshiba, which trailed 57-54 after three quarters, mounted a comeback in the final period and Kleinschmidt gave them the lead for good with his shot that made it 72-70 at Yoyogi national gymnasium annex in Tokyo.
Tom Kleinschmidt had 36 points in the game and was named the Most Valuable Player. Aisin came back from two games down in the best-of-five Super League final but missed out on capturing a double title, coupled with victory in the national championship. Aisin had won both the Super League and national crowns in the previous two seasons, and finished the Super League regular season in first place, ahead of second-place Toshiba.
The Japan Basketball Association said Friday it has given up on its attempt to persuade Mikiko Hagiwara to become coach of the women’s national basketball team after she turned down the offer and no progress was made through continued negotiations. Hagiwara was expected to become the first woman to coach Japan’s national basketball team and was invited to the committee meeting on Friday. But the 34-year-old apparently declined, saying the association should not have waited so long to start looking for another candidate.
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