The Formosa Taishin Dreamers pulled off a huge upset on Friday to escape the Taoyuan Pauian Pilots 86-81 to snap its two-game losing streak and pull the Pilots down from the top of the P. LEAGUE+ standings.
Before the game, the Pilots were at the top of the six-team league standings with the New Taipei Kings, but have now fallen slightly to second place with a 14-6 record, while the Dreamers remain in fifth, carrying a 8-13 card.
The Pilots and the Dreamers are now 0.5 and seven games back of the Kings, respectively.
Pilots guard Justin Lu (???) led all scorers with 20 points, while Dreamers center Brandon Gilbeck answered with a double-double of 18 points and 15 rebounds.
After the game, Jeff Wu (???) said the win was a huge motivation for the team as the season is coming into its second half and it may be a turning point for the better.
"I gave myself too much pressure, both offensively and defensively, in recent previous games," Wu said, adding that being back at his homecourt, the team had to pull in their efforts to gain the win.
During the game on Friday, the Dreamers, backed by homecourt advantage at Intercontinental Basketball Stadium, led the pace and held a 27-20 advantage at the end of the first quarter before pushing forward to finish the first half 52-35.
The Pilots rallied in the second half and cut down the deficit by finding the open man and accurate shooting, overtaking the scoreboard 57-56 after an open jump shot near the top of the key by guard Justin Lu with around four minutes left in the third quarter.
From there, the Pilots finished the quarter four points ahead 64-60.
The fourth quarter turned into a nail-biter after Dreamers guard Ryan Lu (???) axed a three-pointer to equal the score to 71 a piece with just under eight minutes left in the game.
The Dreamers then woke up, making use of Pilots' errors to turn them into successful plays and push themselves back in the lead 80-74 with just under four minutes in the fourth quarter.
A three-point step-back jump shot by Wu with only 23 second until the final buzzer gave the Dreamers a comfortable cushion 86-81. A last play from the Pilots missed its mark to hit the back iron, conceding the game to the Dreamers.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel