09 - 15
June 2024
33 Sir' Dominic Pointer (SAH)
Game Report
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Shabab Al Ahli through to Final as Pointer denies shot and Gorgan at last second

DUBAI (UAE) - Shabab Al Ahli come from behind to upset Shahrdary Gorgan and win 73-71, booking a spot at the BCL Asia 2024 Final at the Sheikh Saeed Bin Maktoum on June 14.


The game was one worthy of a battle for a seat in the Basketball Champions League Asia (BCL Asia) Final, as both teams traded blows in a back-and-forth affair. Even when Gorgan built up a lead of as much as 10 points in the middle of the third quarter, Shabab Al Ahli didn't take too much time to strike back and cut the deficit down to only one point heading into the final quarter.

The final quarter looked as if Gorgan would run away with a strong start by the Iranian champions as they built up a seven-point lead early on. However, Shabab Al Ahli refused to give up and stormed back to take the lead with less than three minutes left in the game.

With the game tied at 68 with less than two minutes to go, Arsalan Kazemi broke the deadlock in getting a trip to the free-throw line. However, he'd only split those free-throw attempts to give Gorgan a one-point lead.

Local star Qais Omar Alshabebi took back the lead for Shabab Al Ahli, only to have Salar Monji instantly reply with a rim-rolling layup.

With just over 30 seconds left, Travin Thibodeaux dropped the biggest shot of the game with a deafening three-pointer, eventually becoming the game-winning bucket.

The biggest play was yet to come. After Pointer missed two free-throws to make it a two-possesion game with seconds left, Gorgan rushed up the floor to make on last attempt. Sina Vahedi drove hard to the hoop from the baseline, rose for the layup and was emphatically denied by Pointer who redeemed himself to secure the win for Shabab Al Ahli.

Sina Vahedi started the game on a tear, scoring 11 of Gorgan's first 14 points, and finished the game with 24 points. However, it was unfortunate that he could not get the last two points in regulation that would have kept his team's hopes alive.

Arsalan Kazemi had 5 points, 15 rebounds, and 4 assists in an impressive all-around game before fouling out down the final stretch.

For Shabab Al Ahli, Pointer came to life in the final quarter to finish with 16 points, 4 rebounds, and 5 assists - but the most important statistic being that final block to seal the game. Qais Omar Alshabebi led the team in scoring with 20 points and 5 rebounds.

Turning Point:  Travin Thibodeaux's last-minute three-pointer was the eventually game-winning dagger for Shabab Al Ahli, but it was the thunderous dunk by Sir'Dominic Pointer to give the host to cap a 7-0 run and claim a 68-66 lead that energized the team.


Stats don't lie:  Shabab Al Ahli had two blocks in total as a team and they were all collected by Pointer. Again, the most important being the dagger block in the final seconds.