Shabab Al Ahli-Dubai drub Al Bashaer by 31, stretch unbeaten run to four
DUBAI (United Arab Emirates) - Shabab Al Ahli-Dubai showed no mercy in keeping Al Bashaer winless, 92-61, to extend their unbeaten run in WASL-Gulf, Tuesday night at the Sheikh Saeed Bin Maktoum Sports Hall in Dubai.
Showing how much they've learned from their season-opening encounter last December 19, the home team didn't take any chances this time around by breaking away late in the opening period to cruise to their biggest win yet.
Despite missing the services of Nick Minnerath due to injury, the Emirati club regained leadership of Group A with a clean 4-0 record.
The team from Oman, on the other hand, absorbed their fourth loss in as many games after absorbing their second-worst defeat of the season.
Game heroes: All but two players scored in the 32-point conquest, with veteran big man Omar Alshabebi on the forefront with 20 points and 13 rebounds -- his second double-double performance of the season.
Milan Milosevic registered his own double-double with 17 points and 10 rebounds, but also turned it up on defense as he racked up a game-high 4 steals.
Brandon Triche finished with 15 points, 8 rebounds, and 5 assists. Talal Alnuaimi chimed in 10 markers spiked by a pair of triples off the bench.
STEP AHEAD Player of the Game: Undeniably Shabab Al Ahli's unquestioned leader, the 31-year-old Alshabebi was adjudged as the STEP AHEAD Player of the Game fan voting after receiving a whopping 41-percent.
Turning point: Game was tied at 10-all with under five minutes left in the first quarter but the hosts put together a 10-2 run behind the trio of Milosevic, Triche, and Alshabebi to head into the following frame with a 22-12 advantage.
The visitors would never be able to chop the deficit to just a single digit since then. They even trailed by as big as 42 points, 44-86, during the final canto.
Stats don't lie: A team that shot 46-percent from the floor, Shabab Al Ahli dominated the board, 52-36. They also turned Al Bashaer's 17 turnovers to 21 points, and played the running game excellently by garnering 27 fast break points.
They said: "We won and it's team effort at the end of the day. Fourth straight win -- three wins on our homecourt, one outside -- we have to keep the same mentality, the same energy, and just focus on the next game." - Omar Alshabebi, Shabab Al Ahli-Dubai
"It was a good team. We were missing two key players today. But I feel like we fought hard and we just gotta continue to keep building, When you don't play hard defense for four quarters, that's what happens. So, we gotta continue to lock in on defense and stay disciplined as a team. We can be a much better basketball team. But overall I think we fought and we gotta continue to fight. We have a couple more games in the tournament so we're gonna continue to fight." - Aaron Parks, Al Bashaer