Basketball / B. League

Alvark edge Brave Thunders, earn series split

by Ed Odeven

Staff Writer

The visiting Alvark Tokyo avenged their Friday defeat by outplaying the Kawasaki Brave Thunders in Saturday’s marquee rematch.

In the two-time reigning champions’ 72-68 victory, they were held to seven third-quarter points, but they got back on track in the final quarter to secure the win at Todoroki Arena.

Tokyo center Alex Kirk had nine of his team-best 20 points in the fourth. Kirk drained 9 of 10 fouls shots in the last period. He also grabbed 17 rebounds.

Teammate Kevin Jones added 17 points, Seiya Ando scored 14 and Daiki Tanaka had 10 with seven assists.

Both teams shot poorly from 3-point range. The Alvark (26-9) made 6 of 26; the Brave Thunders converted 4 of 20.

Nick Fazekas scored 38 points and hauled in 10 boards for Kawasaki (27-8). Yuma Fujii had 11 points and 10 assists.

Jets 79, Susanoo Magic 64

In Matsue, Shimane Prefecture, a pair of streak were extended in Saturday’s series finale: Chiba rolled to its 10th straight win, while Shimane suffered its seventh consecutive loss.

Michael Parker had a team-best 16 points for the Jets (25-10), adding nine rebounds, four steals and two blocks in a stellar all-around performance.

Josh Duncan scored 15 points and snared 12 rebounds, Yuki Togashi had 12 points and 11 assists and Fumio Nishimura poured in 13 points for Chiba.

DaJuan Summers, a former NBA forward and a second-round pick of the Detroit Pistons in 2009, led the Susanoo Magic (10-25) with 19 points.

B-Corsairs 75, Evessa 70

In Yokohama, new head coach Shogo Fukuda earned a victory in his first game at the helm against Osaka.

Fukuda, 36, began the season as an assistant coach on B-Corsairs bench boss Tom Wisman’s staff.

The team announced the 70-year-old Wisman’s departure on Saturday.

Wisman was in his second season in charge.

Reginald Becton led Yokohama (9-24) with 31 points and 15 boards, James Southerland had 15 points, Aki Chambers scored 11 and Shusuke Ikuhara added eight.

Josh Harrellson scored 25 points and pulled down 13 rebounds for the Evessa (22-11). Richard Hendrix finished with 23 points on 10-for-12 shooting and three steals.

Osaka trailed 38-33 at halftime, and Fukuda acknowledged after the game it was not easy to built a lead against the visitors.

In the first half, he said of his team: “There wasn’t aggressive defense.”

Fukuda challenged his players to elevate their defensive performance in the second half.

Sunrockers 75, Golden Kings 73 (OT)

In Tokyo, Charles Jackson scored a go-ahead inside bucket with 23 seconds left in overtime and Shibuya held on for a hard-fought win over Ryukyu.

Jackson’s shot gave the Sunrockers a 74-73 lead.

Teammate Leo Vendrame made the first of two foul shots with 13 seconds remaining for the game’s final point.

The Golden Kings’ De’Mon Brooks missed a 3-pointer before the final buzzer.

Ryukyu center Jack Cooley sent the game into OT, converting two free throws with 15 seconds to play in the fourth. That made it 66-66.

Sebastian Saiz sparked Shibuya (23-11) with 18 points, 10 rebounds and three blocks. Jackson also scored 18 points and swatted two shots. Vendrame finished with 15 points. Morihisa Yamauchi dished out five assists.

Brooks scored 29 points for the Golden Kings (21-12) and Cooley had 17 points and 19 rebounds, while Ryuichi Kishimoto had nine points.

Brex 94, NeoPhoenix 75

In Hamamatsu, balanced scoring and a strong start carried Utsunomiya past San-en.

The Brex, who had seven players with eight or more points, led 50-29 at halftime.

Ryan Rossiter scored 19 points for Utsunomiya (26-8). Yusuke Endo had 10 points, Jawad Williams, Jeff Gibbs and Ryo Yamazaki added nine apiece, while rookie Kai Toews chipped in with eight, as did Shuhei Kitagawa. Kosuke Takeuchi was the team’s top rebounder (seven). Endo handed out a team-best five assists.

NeoPhoenix big man Viacheslav Kravtsov, who hails from the Ukraine, led his club with 17 points and 11 rebounds. He played a combined 45 games for the Detroit Pistons and Phoenix Suns in the 2012-13 and 2013-14 NBA seasons.

San-en’s Robert Dozier scored 16 and Takanobu Nishikawa followed with 15 points, including four 3s.

Rookie Yuki Kawamura and Shuto Terazono had 10 points apiece for the NeoPhoenix (3-31). The 18-year-old Kawamura, playing in his fourth game as a pro, added seven assists, six rebounds, five turnovers and three steals in nearly 34 minutes

Diamond Dolphins 83, Albirex BB 55

In Nagoya, the hosts embarked on an 11-0 run to open the second quarter and built a commanding lead in a rout of Niigata.

The Albirex trailed 45-21 at halftime.

Ex-NBA center Hilton Armstrong paced Nagoya with 23 points on 10-for-11 shooting. He hauled in 10 rebounds to complete the double-double and blocked two shots.

Takaya Sasayama contributed 12 points and seven assists for the Diamond Dolphins (14-20), Shuto Ando poured in 10 points and Justin Burrell finished with eight points and 14 boards.

Keita Imamura led Niigata (11-23) with 18 points. Xavier Gibson had 12 points and 10 rebounds.

The Albirex shot 5-for-28 from 3-point range.

SeaHorses 82, Lakestars 57

In Kariya, Aichi Prefecture, Davante Gardner’s 25-point, 10-rebound effort and J.R. Sakuragi’s eight assists helped propel the hosts past Shiga.

Teammate Chris Johnson chipped in with 21 points and Yuta Okada scored 18.

The SeaHorses (16-18) led by as many as 30 points.

Shiga’s Craig Brackins had a team-high 14 points and 10 rebounds.

The Lakestars (16-18) made just 3 of 10 free-throw attempts.

Grouses 77, Levanga 72

In Toyama, Isaac Butts’ potent 25-point, 17-rebound outing and Leo Lyons’ 24 points led the hosts past Hokkaido.

Butts made 12 of 13 shots from the field.

Tomokazu Abe poured in 18 points for the Grouses (14-20).

Markeith Cummings had 24 points for the Levanga (11-23), Marc Trasolini added 19 points, 10 boards and six assists and Ryoma Hashimoto contributed 12 points.

Hannaryz 73, Northern Happinets 70

In Akita, Julian Mavunga energized Kyoto with team-high totals in points (28), rebounds (12) and assists (seven) in a narrow victory over the hosts.

David Simon and Keijuro Matsui scored 14 and 12 points, respectively, for the Hannaryz (17-17).

Javier Carter was the high scorer the Northern Happinets (15-18) with 18 points.

Kyoto held Akita to 37.5 percent shooting (18 of 48) from 2-point range.

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