09 - 15
June 2024
Game Report
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Riyadi win first-ever BCL Asia with tournament-high points and three-pointers in title game

DUBAI (UAE) - Al Riyadi complete a dominating run to win the first-ever BCL Asia, 122-96, over host Shabab Al Ahli on June 15 at the sold-out Sheikh Saeed Bin Maktoum Sports Hall.

The title victory also means Al Riyadi have now booked a ticket to the FIBA Intercontinental Cup 2024 as a representative of Asia.

This is Al Riyadi's third title in Asia's flagship club competition, having won the Asia Champions Cup in 2011 and 2017.

The drums and cheers of the supporters for both squads were at war even before tip-off creating a loud atmosphere in the first-ever BCL Asia championship game.

Marcus Georges-Hunt came out of the gates on fire, scoring 13 points in the first quarter alone. Riyadi were prepared, however, as their two stars Asia Cup 2022 TISSOT MVP Wael Arakji and WASL Final 8 MVP Thon Maker combined for 15 points in the first period.

Maker continued his dominance in the second quarter, adding on 14 more point to total for 22 points in the first half. Early in that quarter, Shabab Al Ahli sprung a run by bring in Sir'Dominic Pointer off the bench. This resulted in the hosts going up 41-34 after two back-to-back threes from Hamid Lateef.

Then came the run.

Powered by Maker's advantage inside and three-pointers by Amir Saoud, Riyadi went on a 13-1 run leading towards the end of the half. Shabab Al Ahli tried to respond with big three-pointers from both Pointer and Mohammad Alajmani, but Riyadi always had a counter.

First, it was a showtime throw down by Hayk Gyokchyan, but the piercing dagger was a near full-court heave by Zach Lofton that beat the halftime buzzer by mere fractions of a second to keep the deficit at nine points in favor of Riyadi.

Lofton continued by knocking down Riyadi's first three-pointer of the second half, setting the tone for the squad building up their lead up until the final buzzer. Arakji added on five more consecutive points, eventually leading to a 13-0 run that more or less sealed the deal for the eventual champions.

If the early run in the second half wasn't enough of a blow to Shabab Al Ahli's hope, Arakji's four consecutive three-pointers in the span of two minutes to close out a massive 44-16 quarter.

All right players fielded got on the scoreboard for Riyadi led by Wael Arakji who scored 31 points on 11-13 shooting to go with 9 assists.

Sir'Dominic Pointer led Shabab Al Ahli in scoring with 25 points while also getting 7 rebounds and 9 assists.

Turning Point: It's tough to pick a defining moment for Riyadi in this championship game. Lofton's buzzer-beater at halftime certainly dampened the hopes of Shabab Al Ahli heading into the locker room, but Arakji's spitfire three-point shooting at the end of the third quarter was just as heartbreaking for the hosts.

You decide.

Stats don't lie: Riyadi surpassed their tournament-high in points scored yet again while also completing the feat of scoring over 100 points in each contest. Moreover, they knocked down a tournament-high of 18 three-pointers as well in this championship game. What a run.