19 December, 2022
23 May, 2023
41 Nicolas Minnerath (SAH)
Game Report
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Shabab Al Ahli regain groove, beat Al Nasr to move a win away from Semi-Finals

DUBAI (United Arab Emirates) - Shabab Al Ahli-Dubai could not have chosen a better time to snap out of an uncharacteristic losing skid.

The Emirati ball club showed that they've had enough of their two-game slide to end the Group Phase after beating Al Nasr Riyadh, 100-90, to inch closer to the Gulf League Semi-Finals, Tuesday night at the Sheikh Saeed Bin Maktoum Sports Hall.

The Dubai based club takes a 1-0 advantage in this tie

Shabab Al Ahli now possess the 1-0 lead in the best-of-3 Qualification to Semi-Finals series, and could close it out next Tuesday, 4 April, in Riyadh.

The victory, however, was not handed on a silver platter as the home team had to fend off the gritty opposition, who came to within just six, 96-90, with 1:39 left after being down by as much as 15 points early in the final period.

Nick Minnerath took it upon himself to shut the door close on Al Nasr, knocking down a fallaway jumper to make it an eight-point spread with 1:25 left before hauling down Musab Kadi's miss on the other end shortly after that practically sealed the deal.

Game heroes: Minnerath top-scored for Shabab Al Ahli with 25 points, 14 of which he made in the second half, alongside 7 rebounds, 2 steals, and a block.

Qais Omar Alshabebi was back in his element with 24 points, including 12 in the opening period alone that saw him spark a 15-2 run for a 23-21 lead to end the first. The veteran big man also had 14 rebounds for another double-double.

Brandon Triche had his own double-double with 19 points on 3 triples and 12 assists, together with 5 rebounds and a pair of steals.

Hamid Lateef Albreiki made his presence felt as well with 14 points, highlighted by a poster jam during the fourth much to the delight of his teammates.

STEP AHEAD Player of the Game: Alshabebi earned STEP AHEAD Player of the Game honors, receiving 38-percent in the online fan vote.

Shabab Al Ahli's big man dropped 24 points and added 14 rebounds

Turning point: Mohammad Alajmani and Minnerath joined hands for an 11-0 run towards a 66-55 lead with 4:18 left in the third quarter, which put Shabab Al Ahil ahead the rest of the way.

Stats don't lie: It goes without saying that teamwork proved key in the triumph as Shabab Al Ahli racked up 27 assists, leading to all eight players fielded scoring at least 6. They also took advantage of transition chances, scoring 22 off the break.

Defense was, of course, as important for the hosts as they had 13 steals, 5 of which came from Alajmani. He had the same amount as Al Nasr as a whole.


They said: "It feels really great. We had like a 6-week break, and we kinda lost our rhythm. We lost two games in a row. Now we play in our local league, we won one game, and now we won a game in WASL. It's really, really great because now we're playing as a team." - Brandon Triche, Shabab Al Ahli-Dubai

"We lost today because we didn't play together. We lost in defense. We're making three-points, we make two-points, but we didn't play good defense many times. This is the reason why we lost: defense." - Musab Kadi, Al Nasr Riyadh