Asami Yoshida steered Japan to its second win in two days at the FIBA Women’s Asia Cup in Bangalore, India on Monday, beating South Korea to ensure a top-two finish in Group B.
After Japan coach Tom Hovasse sat her for almost all of the team’s blowout win over the Philippines on Sunday, Yoshida made her presence known in the 70-56 win over 12-time Asian champion South Korea.
The diminutive point guard finished with just four points but impacted the game everywhere else with eight assists, six steals and four rebounds.
Manami Fujioka led Japan in scoring with 14 points, with Moeko Nagaoka (13) and Maki Takada (10) also reaching double figures in points.
South Korea led after the first quarter, but a 26-point outburst in the second period for Japan provided separation. Japan’s defense also proved key leading into halftime, with the South Koreans able to score only seven points on 3-for-11 shooting in the second stanza.
Kwak Joo-yeong and Lim Yung-hui scored 12 points apiece for South Korea, but the team’s 24 total turnovers gave it little chance to compete.