• The Japan Times


A strong third-quarter spurt carried the Niigata Albirex BB to a 94-80 victory over the Tokyo Apache on Thursday at Yoyogi National Gymnasium.

Leading 47-44 at halftime, the Albirex (14-16) went on an 11-2 third quarter-opening run to take a commanding 58-46 lead. Niigata led 71-57 entering the fourth quarter.

Swingman Emmanuel Little, playing his 16th game in an Albirex uniform, scored a game-best 23 points, topping the 20-point plateau for the first time this season, and adding nine rebounds and five assists for good measure. Teammate Antonio Burks chipped in with 18 points, Dokun Akingbade had 16 and Akitomo Takeno 14 as Niigata completed the two-game sweep over its Eastern Conference rival.

For Tokyo (18-12), which has lost four straight games, Julius Ashby had team-high totals in points (21) and rebounds (11).

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