Basketball / B. League

Strong Alvark frontcourt overwhelms B-Corsairs

by Ed Odeven

Staff Writer

Veteran poise paid off the Alvark Tokyo on Sunday afternoon.

Frontcourt mates Joji Takeuchi and Alex Kirk, pillars of the team’s back-to-back title-winning teams, scored 19 and 14 points, respectively, and veteran forward Milan Macvan came off the bench and poured in 17 points as the Alvark Tokyo held off the Yokohama B-Corsairs 82-69.

Kirk pulled down 13 rebounds to complete the double-double, while starting point guard Seiya Ando finished with 14 points and five assists (sharing the team lead with Macvan and Takeki Shonaka) at Yokohama International Swimming Pool. Daiki Tanaka chipped in with seven points and Yutaro Suda had six points for Tokyo (16-5).

Yokohama post player William McDonald, who turned 40 on Oct. 5, had 26 points on 11-for-16 shooting in his season debut with seven rebounds. McDonald suited up for the B-Corsairs (7-13) in the 2017-18 campaign and the San-en NeoPhoenix last season. Ryo Tawatari added 13 points, newcomer James Southerland had 12 points and Aki Chambers scored 11 and made five steals.

Yokohama dropped Saturday’s series opener 78-58, prompting coach Tom Wisman to shake up his starting lineup. He named McDonald and guard Shusuke Ikuhara as Sunday starters.

In a high-energy start to the game, Tokyo led 24-18 after the opening stanza.

A 10-0 second-quarter spurt capped by a Macvan in-the-paint basket put Tokyo in front 39-23 at the 3:14 mark, and the Alvark led 44-30 at halftime.

Yokohama outscored the visitors 39-38 the rest of the way.

In the fourth, the Alvark took their biggest lead (78-58) on a Takeuchi baseline bank shot with 4:27 left.

“Yokohama is a team that we are stronger than them,” Tokyo coach Luka Pavicevic said. “But they play proud basketball with Coach Wisman, and for us it was very important to complete two victories as we are together with all other East Conference teams in a pursuit of playoff position. It was really important that we come here to Yokohama and complete the weekend with two wins.”

He added: “I think throughout the whole game we controlled the result and most of the part of the defensive end of the game, and that’s what gave us this victory.”

The Alvark held Yokohama players not named McDonald to 15-for-35 overall shooting, including 2 of 13 from beyond the arc.

“We competed today and gave ourselves a chance to make a run and make something happen,” Wisman said. “Yesterday, we never gave ourselves that chance. So I’m happy with the intensity and the heart that the team played with.”

Said Chambers: “We played hard today, but unfortunately we didn’t get the win.”

Jets 106, Evessa 105 (2OT)

In Osaka, Yuki Togashi scored 35 points and Chiba triumphed in double overtime to avenge Saturday’s loss.

Osaka’s Tatsuya Ito forced OT by making the first of two free throws with 50 seconds left in the fourth. That made it 80-80.

In OT, Togashi sank a 3-pointer to tie it 93-93 with 6 seconds remaining, sending it to double OT.

With 4 seconds to go in the second OT, Chiba’s Shigehiro Taguchi made two free throws, giving the Jets a 106-102 advantage. Before the final buzzer sounded, Osaka’s Takuya Hashimoto canned a 3-pointer to account for the final score.

Michael Parker finished with 20 points and 16 boards, Shuta Hara netted 16 points and Josh Duncan had 15 points and 12 rebounds for the Jets (13-8).

Ira Brown scored 21 points and corralled 11 rebounds, Ito had 18 points and nine assists and Josh Harrellson supplied 18 points and 14 rebounds, with Hashimoto also pouring in 18 for the Evessa (13-7).

Golden Kings 84, Levanga 69

In Sapporo, Ryukyu held the hosts to under 20 points in each of the final three quarters and completed a weekend sweep.

Ryuichi Kishimoto sparked the Golden Kings (13-7) with 23 points, including 4 of 8 on 3s. Jack Cooley also scored 23 points and hauled in 19 rebounds.

Kennedy Meeks led Hokkaido (9-12) with 21 points and 10 boards.

Lakestars 92, Sunrockers 79

In Tokyo, Shiga won the battle on the boards and earned a bounce-back victory over Shibuya.

The Lakestars (9-12) outrebounded the hosts 40-29.

Jeff Ayres energized Shiga with 27 points and 20 rebounds. Henry Walker had 20 points, Takuma Sato poured in 15 and Takumi Saito contributed 14 and 10 assists.

Sebastian Saiz had 21 points and 10 boards for the Sunrockers (15-6).

Susanoo Magic 80, Grouses 59

In Matsue, Shimane Prefecture, Robert Carter had 27 points and snared nine rebounds as the hosts salvaged a weekend split with Toyama.

Brian Qvale chipped in with 18 points and 15 boards and Yasuhiro Yamashita registered eight assists for the Susanoo Magic (7-14).

Leo Lyons had 21 points and 10 rebounds for the Grouses (7-14).

Northern Happinets 72, Diamond Dolphins 58

In Akita, the hosts took a 23-10 lead into the second quarter and recorded a series split with Nagoya.

Ryuto Yasuoka poured in 21 points for the Northern Happinets (11-9).

Takaya Sasayama supplied 12 points and five assists for the Diamond Dolphins (11-10).

Brex 78, Hannaryz 58

In Kyoto, Utsunomiya overwhelmed the Hannaryz for the second straight day, winning its 10th straight.

Kyoto extended its losing streak to 10.

For the Brex (17-4), Ryan Rossiter had a team-best 13 points, Jeff Gibbs added 11 points and 13 boards and Makoto Hiejima also scored 11 points.

Jessie Govan led the Hannaryz (8-13) with 21 points and 13 rebounds.

Albirex BB 83, NeoPhoenix 65

In Toyohashi, Aichi Prefecture, Niigata canned 13 of 25 3s en route to victory.

Kei Igarashi paced the Albirex (5-14) with 21 points.

Robert Dozier had 22 points for the NeoPhoenix (1-18).