P. LEAGUE+ & T1 LEAGUE/Pilots get 9th win in row to break P. LEAGUE+ consecutive wins record
Taipei, Jan. 6 (CNA) The Taoyuan Pauian Pilots broke the professional basketball P. LEAGUE+ record for most consecutive wins by winning its ninth game in a row after it overpowered the Kaohsiung 17LIVE Steelers in a 110-97 road victory on Friday.
The new consecutive wins record breaks the old record of eight wins in a row achieved by the Taipei Fubon Braves in the league's inaugural 2020-2021 season.
Pilots guard Justin Lu (盧峻翔) led all scorers with 28 points, shooting 10-18 from the floor, including 5-12 from beyond the arc and 3-3 from the free-throw line. Meanwhile, Steelers center Viacheslav Kravtsov led his team with a double-double of 24 points and 12 rebounds.
After the game, Lu said his scoring during the game was due to the help and encouragement of his coach and teammates.
"I'm thankful for my teammates and my coach for believing in me," Lu said.
As for the latest win, the Pilots did not underestimate their opponent even though they were already on an eight-game winning streak, Lu said.
The Pilots' improved performance comes as a delight to Taoyuan fans as the team was one of two, the other being the Steelers, that did not make it to the playoffs last season.
During the game on Friday at Kaohsiung Fengshan Stadium, the Pilots set the tone right from the jump, outhustling their hosts 30-23 by the end of the first quarter.
The Taoyuan team was even hotter in the second quarter as it overwhelmed the Steelers to finish the first half with a 17-point lead, 58-41.
The Pilots held onto the lead and pushed the score to triple digits at 100-79 after Lu made a three-pointer with around four minutes left in the game.
Another bucket, this time a step-back from the perimeter by center Jason Washburn, put the game out of reach at 110-93 with 45 seconds left until the final buzzer.
The game eventually ended 110-97 for the Pilots to bag their ninth consecutive win.
The Pilots are now second in the six-team league standings with a 10-3 record and only 0.5 games behind the leaders, the New Taipei Kings, at 11-3.
The Steelers are last in the standings after having only won one game out of 14 this season so far.
P. LEAGUE+ weekend games
Over the weekend, also in the P. LEAGUE+, the Hsinchu Jko Lioneers will host the New Taipei Kings and the defending champion Taipei Fubon Braves at Hsinchu County Stadium on Saturday and Sunday, respectively.
Meanwhile the visiting Formosa Taishin Dreamers will play the Steelers in a road game at Kaohsiung Fengshan Stadium on Sunday.
HeroBears sign Perry Jones
In the T1 LEAGUE, Taiwan's other professional basketball league, the TaiwanBeer HeroBears have signed former NBA player Perry Jones, the club said in a statement Friday.
The 2.11-meter-tall American professional basketball player played for the Braves in the P. LEAGUE+ last season where he posted an average of 19.3 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 2.3 assists, the HeroBears said.
In addition to playing in the P. LEAGUE+, Jones also played three years in the NBA for the Oklahoma City Thunder between 2012-2015.
His addition will hopefully bring energy to the HeroBears and it is believed that his previous experience of playing in Taiwan will help him integrate quickly into his new team, the statement added.
T1 LEAGUE weekend games
In the T1 LEAGUE, the defending champion Kaohsiung Aquas will host the Tainan TSG GhostHawks and the New Taipei CTBC DEA at Kaohsiung Arena on Saturday and Sunday, respectively.
Meanwhile the Taipei-based TaiwanBeer HeroBears will host the Taichung Suns on Saturday and the Taoyuan Leopards on Sunday at University of Taipei Tianmu Campus Gymnasium.
Jan. 26: Beyond the record: How Caminos, Pilots are confounding P.LEAGUE+
Jan. 15: City of two tales: Taoyuan Pauian Pilots top P. LEAGUE, Leopards hit rock bottom
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