• The Japan Times


The Rizing Fukuoka’s “Big Three” combined for 68 points in the club’s 86-80 Western Conference first-round series-opening victory over the visiting Shimane Susanoo Magic on Wednesday as the bj-league’s postseason play got under way.

As usual, Michael Parker was Fukuoka’s top scorer (34 points, eight rebounds), followed by Nile Murry (22 points, five assists) and Akitomo Takeno (12 points, six assists). Takeno made five of the team’s 15 steals. Murry was 10-for-11 at the free-throw line

Reggie Golson paced the expansion Susanoo Magic, who are 0-5 against Fukuoka this season, with 24 points and grabbed eight rebounds. Will Caudle and Jeral Davis each scored 12, Takumi Ishizaki had 11 and Terry Evans added 10.

Shimane led 45-39 at the half. The Rizing, however, had a 72-56 advantage midway through the fourth quarter. Then the Magic staged a spirited comeback and pulled to within 76-72 and 84-80. But Takeno nailed two free throws with 13 seconds remaining to account for the game’s final points.

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