Saturday, April 30, 2005

ETSN upset Yulon to keep playoffs dream alive

ETSN bigmen Wu Dai-hao and Wu Jun-hsiung dominated the paint as ETSN upset Yulon 88-75 in the season finale to keep its playoffs dream alive. ETSN will be waiting for the result of Taiwan Beer-Sina game tomorrow to know whether it has another game to play.

ETSN finished its season 16-14 after a strong 11-6 second-half performance under new head coach Lee Yun-hsiang. As of today Taiwan Beer is 15-14 and still favored to grab the final playoff spot, since it’s expected to take the Sina game and holds the head-to-head tiebreaker advantage. Taiwan Beer is 3-2 vs. ETSN in the regular season.

Wu Dai-hao had 25 points and 10 rebounds and Wu Jun-hsiung had 22 and 9 for ETSN, which played its best game of the season and led by as many as 22 points in the third quarter. Wu Dai-hao, who has been making smooth progress in the second-half of the season, had at least five rim-rattling dunks in the game.

ETSN jumped ahead with an 11-0 run after giving up the game’s first six points to Yulon, which was forced to play a catch-up game in the last 35 minutes. Yang Yu-min and Wu Cheng-dao each scored 13 points for ETSN.

However this is not a night for Yulon, which looked unstoppable before the game. Yulon’s outside shots didn’t start falling until the fourth quarter. Its defense and rebounding is horrible. Chen Hsin-an made four three-pointers in the last quarter when Yulon cut the deficit to single-digit but it’s still too late.

Yulon’s 11-game winning streak was snapped. Chen Hsin-an led Yulon with 29 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists. Chou Shih-yuan had 14 points.

Yulon will meet second-place Videoland, which has dropped three straight, in the final game.

Taiwan Beer beat Bank of Taiwan 72-66 in the first game. BOT closed the season with a 9-game losing streak.

Apr. 30
ETSN 88-75 Yulon
ETSN: Wu Dai-hao 25p+10rb, Wu Jun-hsiung 22p+9rb, Yang Yu-min 13p, Wu Cheng-dao 13p
Yulon: Chen Hsin-an 29p+7rb+4a, Chou Shih-yuan 14p

Taiwan Beer 72-66 BOT
TB: Lin Chi-jay 19p, Lee Wei-min 18p
BOT: Hsu Chi-chan 14p+12rb, Chien Ming-fu 13p, Lin Chun-feng 12p

Apr. 29
Dacin 93-86 Videoland
Dacin: Tien Lei 24p+5rb, Lin Yi-huei 19p, Lee Fong-yong 10p+8rb
VL: Yang Che-yi 20p+6a, Lin Jia-huang 15p, Chen Huei 12p+6rb+7a+5s, Hsiung Jen-jen 11p

Monday, April 25, 2005

Yulon just couldn't be stopped

Yulon Dinos is getting ready for the most important time of the year -- the playoffs. Without starting center Tsun Wen-din, Yulon demonstrated an incredible firepower in the last three games, scoring over 100 in each. Led by Chen Hsin-an's 28 points, Yulon beat Taiwan Beer 103-94 Sunday night to push its winning streak to 11 games.

Offensively and defensively, Yulon looks so good as a team that you could almost give them the champion trophy right now. No team has an answer for their defense, mixed up by 3-2 zone and man-to-man. And their balanced attack on offense is simply too much for any opponent to take. Besides Chen Hsin-an, Chou Shih-yuan has been on fire all year. The combination of Chen and Chou gives Yulon a tremendous edge on offense.

We haven't even mentioned experienced vets like Chen Chih-chun, Chou Hong-yu, Chiu Shi-yi and improving youngsters like center Tsun Wen-din and point guard Lee Hsueh-lin. It's so hard to imagine Yulon lose another game.

At the same time, the battle for the remaining playoff seed continues. ETSN routed VL 93-76 on Saturday while TB lost to Yulon on Sunday. ETSN replaces Taiwan Beer temporarily in the standing as the No.4 seed. However it's more likely TB will get the last playoff ticket since TB holds a 3-2 head-to-head advantage once both teams have the same W-L record and the tiebreaker rule kicks in.

For now, Yulon, Videoland and Dacin had clinched the No.1, No.2 and No.3 playoff seed. Dacin will meet VL in the best-of-three first round playoff series. Yulon is expectd to meet Taiwan Beer in the first round.

Yulon 103-94 Taiwan Beer
Yulon: Chen Hsin-an 28p+8rb, Chou Shih-yuan 23p, Chen Chih-chun 15p
TB: Ho Sho-jen 29p, Lin Chi-jay 20p, Ha Hsiao-yuan 25p

Dacin 84-77 BOT
Dacin: Tien Lei 30p+10rb, Lin Yi-huei 11p
BOT: Wu Yong-jen 20p, Lin Chun-feng 20p, Cheng An-jay 13p+14rb

ETSN 93-76 VL
ETSN: Yang Yu-min 36p, Wu Dai-hao 6p+13rb+4s, Shan Wei-fan 13p, Wu Cheng-dao 13p
VL: Lin Tsun-ching 20p, Lin Shin-hwa 11p, Lin Jia-huang 10p

Yulon 101-88 Sina
Yulon: Chou Shih-yuan 22p+6s, Chen Shih-chun 14p, Wei Yong-tai 14p
Sina: Chen Shi-jay 23p+9rb, Lo Shin-liang 18p, Lu Cheng-ju 12p, Kao Li-min 10P+6rb+5a

Rk. Team W-L Games Behind
. Yulon 24-4 --
%#2. Videoland 18-10 6
@#3. Dacin 17-12 7.5
4. ETSN 15-14 9.5
5. Taiwan Beer 14-14 10
6. Bank of Taiwan 9-20 15.5
7. Sina 3-26 21.5

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

CTBA announced 16-man NT roster

CTBA released the preliminary 16-man roster of the 2005 Taiwan NT, which was submitted by head coach Lee Yun-kwang and set its eye on top six in the Asian Championship(in Qatar) and top three in the East Asian Game(in Macau).

The players will report to training camp on May 21st, right after the SBL Finals, and cut four players before leaving for Guangdong, China for the East Asian qualification. It will enter the Asian Championship and the East Asian Games with the same roster in September and October respectively.

Taiwan NT is schedule for two training tours to U.S. in June and South Korea in August.

(Position, Name, Height, Age, Team)
PG Chen Chih-chun 180 77 28 Yulon
PG Lee Hsueh-lin 175 75 21 Yulon
PG Wang Chih-chun 180 75 23 Dacin
PG Chen Shih-nian 180 76 21 Taiwan Beer
SG Chou Shih-yuan 190 80 22 Yulon
SG Chang Chi-feng 182 84 24 Dacin
SG Yang Yu-min 180 73 26 ETSN
SF Chen Hsin-an 196 90 25 Yulon
SF Yang Che-yi 193 85 27 Videoland
SF Ho Sho-jen 196 100 22 Taiwan Beer
SF Lin Chi-jay 192 95 23 Taiwan Beer
SF Yang Chin-min 188 81 21 Bank of Taiwan
PF Lee Chi-yi 198 88 27 Videoland
PF Tien Lei 202 88 22 Dacin
C Wu Dai-hao 202 100 20 ETSN
C Tsun Wen-din 202 90 21 Yulon

Average: 23.3 years-old, 189.6cm, 84.1kg

Saturday, April 16, 2005

Record night for Chen Hsin-an and Yulon

What a night. Chen Hsin-an had 11 three-pointers and 52 points, both SBL single-game high, as Yulon beat ETSN 113-95 on 22-for-40 three-point shooting as a team, also a single-game team record.

Chen Hsin-an was hot from the first minute, making his first eight three-point attempts, five in the first quarter. In the first quarter alone, Chen had 21 points. And ETSN couldn’t stop him the whole game after using different players to defend him. Chen shot 11-for-16 from the three-point line for the game.

The previous single-game record 44 points was held by Dacin forward Tien Lei, who set the record on the March 5th game versus Bank of Taiwan. Lin Chi-jay of Taiwan Beer set the old three-point record with 10 on a March 20th win over Dacin that went into two overtimes.

Yulon’s 113 points matched the SBL season-high set by Videoland on December 24th, 2004. Its 9-game winning streak is also a season-high.

ETSN ran into Yulon at a bad time as it’s fighting with Taiwan Beer for the last playoff seed. The loss dropped ETSN to 13-14, 1/2 game behind Taiwan Beer(13-13).

Yulon 113-95 ETSN
Yulon: Chen Hsin-an 52p(11-16 3PT)+8rb, Chou Shih-yuan 22p, Lee Hsueh-lin 20p
ETSN: yang Yu-min 25p, Wu Dai-hao 22p+15rb+2blk, Chou Jun-san 14p

Dacin 98-92 Sina
Dacin: Chang Chi-feng 27p+5a, Tien Lei 24p+14rb+6a+6blk, Fan Gun-hsiang 16p, Hsu Chi-chao 15p
Sina: Chen Shi-jay 20p, Lo Shin-liang 19p, Kao Li-min 18p

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Yulon routs Dacin, reaches season-high 8-game winning streak

What was expected to be an exciting game became a rout. Yulon led by as many as 25 points and beat Dacin 85-71 to reach SBL season-high 8-game winning streak Sunday night. Chou Shih-yuan had 15 points for the winner, which has six players scoring in double-figures.

Dacin didn’t look like a team which has a 7-day rest. Their passing was awful in the first half. Their defense was even worse. Yulon was able to translate Dacin’s turnovers into easy fastbreaks, opening up the lead to more than 20 before halftime.

Liu Jia-fa, Dacin’s head coach, probably knew it was not the night for his team. He pulled starters off the court and let subs finished up the game. Tien Lei, Dacin’s Mr. everything, had only 6 points and 6 rebounds in 19 minutes.

However Chen Tse-wei had his best game of the season for Dacin. The 198cm forward shot 10 for 17 from the field, including 7-of-11 from three-point range, en route to his season-high 28 points.

In the second game, Chen Huei was one assist short of his first and SBL’s second triple-double as Videoland handed Bank of Taiwan its sixth straight defeat, 93-72. Chen Huei had 16 points, 11 rebounds and 9 assists.

Yulon 85-71 Dacin
Yulon: Chou Shih-yuan 15p, Chen Chih-chun 13p, Chen Hsin-an 13p, Liu Shen-yao 11p
Dacin: Chen Tse-wei 28p

Videoland 93-72 Bank of Taiwan
VL: Chen Huei 16p+11rb+9a+5s, Lin Tsun-ching 16p, Yang Che-yi 15p+10a, Lee Chi-yi 21p+7rb, Lai Kuo-hong 15p+6rb
BOT: Wu Yong-jen 18p, Chien Ming-fu 14p, Cheng An-jay 10p+12rb

Yulon 21-4, VL 18-8, Dacin 15-12, TB 13-13, ETSN 13-13, BOT 9-18, Sina 3-24

Saturday, April 09, 2005

ETSN Antelopes replace TB at No.4, reach .500

Led by Yang Yu-min’s 26 points, including nine straight in the fourth quarter, ETSN Antelopes (13-13) beat Taiwan Beer 79-70 in a crucial matchup last night. ETSN won its third straight game and replaced TB (12-13) in No.4 in the standing, while also reached .500 for the first time in three months.

Less than one month before the end of the regular season, ETSN and Taiwan Beer are fighting for the fourth playoff seed. ETSN won four of its last five but has a tougher schedule in the remainder of the season. In the four games left to play, ETSN has to meet Yulon twice, Videoland and BOT once each.

Taiwan Beer will meet Yulon and Videoland once each, but has three easier games with Sina twice and BOT once.

ETSN 79-70 TB
ETSN: Yang Yu-min 26p, O-Yang Jin-hen 16p+4s, Shan Wei-fan 12p+8rb, Wu Dai-hao 11p+9rb+3s
TB: Ho Sho-jen 23p, Lin Chi-jay 19p+11rb, Chen Shih-nian 13p+7a

VL 73-66 Sina
VL: Lai Kuo-hong 16p+8rb, Lin Shin-hwa 14p+6rb, Lin Jia-huang 11p
Sina: Kao Li-min 14p+7rb, Lu Cheng-ju 10p, Lu Jia-hao 10p

Taiwan NT News

CTBA officially announced Lee Yung-kwang was named as the men’s NT head coach.

I need to make a correction here though. In the last article I wrote Lee Yun-kwang led Taiwan NT in 2001 and 2003 Asian Championship and finished 7th and 11th respectively. I was wrong. Lee didn’t coach Taiwan NT in the 2003 Asian Championship.

Truth is, Lee led Taiwan NT of senior and university levels from 2001-2002, including:
2001 Asian Championship in Shanghai, China -- 7th
2002 William Jones Cup in Taipei, Taiwan– Champion
2002 Asian Games in Busan, Korea – 7th
2003 World University Games in Daegu, Korea – 7th

Anyway, Lee Yun-kwang has said he plan to take Taiwan NT to the top three in both East Asian qualification and East Asian Games, and top six in the Asian Championship.

It’s not going to be easy.

●Women’s NT 16-man roster
Women’s NT head coach Hong Lin-yao submitted her 16-man roster to the CTBA. For the first time in years, Taiwan women’s NT decides to go young and makes some dramatic changes. 34-year-old veteran Chien Wei-juan, one of the most famous players in Asian women’s basketball, was not selected.

The 16-man roster includes eight players from Cathay Life, Hong’s WSBL team, and eight players from three other WSBL teams. 15 players are under 24 years-old.

Name, Height, Age, Team
Cheng Huei-yun 188cm 28 Cathay Life
Chiang Feng-jun 183cm 24 Cathay Life
Chu Yong-hsuan 175cm 24 Cathay Life
Lin Huei-mei 178cm 24 Cathay Life
Lan Jui-yu 170cm 22 Cathay Life
Chen Yi-feng 171cm 20 Cathay Life
Chang Hsiao-yu 183cm 21 Cathay Life
Lin Wei-mei 173cm 21 Cathay Life
Liu Jun-yi 180cm 24 Taiyuan Textile
Tsai Pei-jan 186cm 21 Taiyuan Textile
Ling Shin-sha 172cm 20 Taiyuan Textile
Liu Jia-sho 183cm 22 Chunghwa Telecom
Wen Chi 167cm 21 Chunghwa Telecom
Sun Jie-ping 172cm 22 Chunghwa Telecom
Lin Ji-wen 186cm 22 Taipower
Liu Yi-chun 183cm 19 Taipower
Average: 178cm, 22 years-old

Six players on the roster of 20th Asain Championship in Sendai, Japan last year were cut, while six others are still on the current roster.

SBL March MVP - Tien Lei

Tien Lei was named MVP for the month of March after averaging 27.9p, 12.7rb, 3.9 assists, 1.43 blocks and 1.86 steals in seven games. In March, Tien Lei set the SBL single-game record with 44 points, also became the first player to reach 1000 points and 500 rebounds. Also, Tien Lei has registered double-double in 11 straight games.

March – Tien Lei(Dacin)
February – Tsun Wen-din(Yulon)
January – Lin Chi-jay(Taiwan Beer)

TB edges Sina thanks to big third quarter

Taiwan Beer used a huge third quarter to outscore Sina 35-12 and made up for a lackluster first half as they edged Sina 78-73 in a game they couldn’t afford to lose. TB now ties with ETSN with 13-13 with both teams having fours games left to decide the fourth and final playoff seed.

In a game they supposed to win, Taiwan Beer was totally out of synch in the first 20 minutes, trailing 28-44 in halftime. Sina time and again used TB’s defensive lapses to bomb TB from the three-point line. On offense, TB has no solution for Sina’s zone defense.

TB came alive in the third quarter. Lin Chi-jay kept penetrating and used his outstanding athletic ability to break down Sina’s defense. After a 35-12 quarter, TB changed the momentum of the game. Chen Shih-nian’s three-pointer in the corner with less than a minute left sealed the win for TB.

TB 78-73 Sina
TB: Lin Chi-jay 23p+10rb, Ho Sho-jen 17p, Chen Shih-nian 17p+5rb+4a, Ha Hsiao-yuan 8p+15rb
Sina: Chen Shi-jay 19p+9rb, Lu Cheng-ju 13p, Lo Shin-liang 13p

Yulon 89-73 BOT
Yulon: Wu Chih-wei 13p+7rb, Chou Shih-yuan 12p+8rb, Chen Hsin-an 12p, Hong Chi-chao 11p
BOT: Ju Yong-hong 18p+13rb, Yang Chin-min 18p+7rb

Friday, April 08, 2005

Report: Lee Yung-kwang named NT head coach

Sources say Lee Yung-kwang, Yulon's acting head coach, was named new NT head coach after the meeting of CTBA men's program committee yesterday. Lee will lead the men's NT in three major competitions: the East Asian qualification games in Guangdong, China, the Asian Championship, and the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar. CTBA hasn't released any official announcement though.

This is the second tenure for Lee Yung-kwang, 37, with the men's NT. He guided Taiwan NT in 2001 and 2003 Asian Championships but finished for miserable 7th and 11th place respectively, the worst finish Taiwan NT has ever had. Lee took over Taiwan NT in 2001 with no previous head coaching experience on any level.

Lee stepped down under criticism after the 2003 Asian Championship and came back to Yulon. He didn't take over Yulon's head coaching duty until the start of this season, when he officially replace legendary coach Chien Yi-fei as Yulon's new front man. Lee successfully led a team with so many injuries and without its best player Chen Hsin-an, who went to U.S. and played in the ABA, and still sit atop the SBL standing.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Report: Taiwan to play in East Asia qualification in May

CTBA will select the 2005 Taiwanese NT following the conclusion of the SBL season and the team will enter the 2005 East Asia qualification in May, Taiwanese news web site reported. The qualification games will be held from May 26-30 in Guangdong, China.

According to the report, FIBA Asia informed CTBA about the withdraw of North Korea, which means there are only six teams left in the tournament: Taiwan, China, Japan, South Korea, Japan, Mongolia and Hong Kong.

The reports also says the top five teams in the 2004 FIBA Stankovic Cup -- Qatar, South Korea, Taiwan, Syria and Japan -- have received the automatic seeds in the 2006 Asia Championship. The defending champion China is also guaranteed a spot in Qatar, the host for the 2006 Asia Championship.

All this means the East Asia qualification only decides one seed, between Hong Kong and Mongolia, for the Asian Championship, the story reported.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Cathay Life wins 14th straight women's title

Cathay Life beat Taiyuen Textile 2-0 in the WSBL (Women's Super basketball League) best-of-three series last weekend to win its 14th straight women's title, once again proving its dominance in Taiwanese women's basketball.

Cathay Life beat Taiyun 98-80 in the deciding game. Center Cheng Huei-yun had 28 points, 15 rebounds and 6 assists and was named the Most Valuable Player. Veteran Chien Wei-juan had 7 points and 13 assists.

Following the success of the SBL last season, CTBA decided to transform women's basketball with the same format. Women's A-League became the WSBL, although it didn't change much besides the league name.

Actually Taiwanese women's basketball is facing a dire situation right now. There are only four teams left. Number of teams went from six to five last year, this year there's one more team was shut down. It's not like there's no women playing basketball in Taiwan. It's that no corporation wants to support a women's basketball team.

Also, Cathay Life is too dominant that almost everyone gives up before challenging them.

Standing of the inaugural WSBL season:

1. Cathay Life 14-1, 2. Taiyuen Textile 9-6, 3. Chunghwa Telecom 5-10, 4. Taipower 2-13

As you can see, all team are supported by big companies. Cathay Life is one of the biggest insurance companies in Taiwan. Taiyuen Textile is a company under Yulon corporation, the No.1 automobile company in Taiwan. Chunghwa Telecom and Taipower (Taiwan Power Company) are both state-controlled public companies.

**Women's NT head coach
Cathay Life's Hong Ling-yao was named once again as the women's NT head coach. She will lead the national team in three upcoming competition: the 2005 Asian Women's Championship, which takes place in Qinhuangdao, China in June, the 3rd East Asia games in Macau(October, 2005), and the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar.

Hong is expected to submit the 15 or 16-man preliminary roster for the Asian Championship on April 9th.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

ETSN makes final push toward playoffs

ETSN made the final push to the last playoff seed by winning both games this week and three of the last four. Right now ETSN (12-13) is only a half game behind No.4 Taiwan Beer (12-12) and can replace TB’s spot as soon as next Friday when they meet.

Obviously the coaching change helps ETSN. It has a 6-5 record since Lee Yun-hsiang took over in late-February, when it’s 6-8. Under Lee, ETSN stresses more on Wu Dai-hao’s inside play and their offense is more organized.

ETSN beat Dacin 76-72 Saturday night and routed Sina 86-66 on Sunday. Yang Yu-min had 22 points, including 20 in the first half, and Wu Dai-hao had 17 points and 8 blocks in the first game. ETSN made 14 of 16 free-throws in the last five minutes to seal the win. The second game was no problem for ETSN although Sina gave them a good fight in the first half.

April 2
ETSN 76-72 Dacin
ETSN: Yang Yu-min 22p, Wu Dai-hao 17p+6rb+8blk, Hsu Tse-shin 21p(8-10 FT)
Dacin: Tien Lei 20p+17rb+5a(7-26 FG), Lee Fong-yong 17p+8rb, Chang Chi-feng 12p

TB 100-71 BOT
TB: Lin Chi-jay 21p, Ho Sho-jen 20p
BOT: Lin Chun-feng 18p+8rb, Wu Yong-jen 15p, Yang Chin-min 12p

April 3
ETSN 86-66 Sina
ETSN: Yang Yu-min 15p, Hong Yin-che 11p, Hsu Tse-shin 11p, Wu Jun-hsiung 9p+10rb
Sina: Hong Chih-shan 23p, Chang Yu-lin 15p, Kao Li-min 11p+14rb+5a, Lu Jia-hao 11p+12rb

Dacin 80-71 TB
Dacin: Hsu Chi-chao 20p, Chang Chi-feng 19p, Tien Lei 17p(7-22 FG)+18rb+5a
TB: Ho Sho-jen 18p, Lin Chi-jay 17p, Wu Chih-yuan 11p+11rb, Chen Shih-nian 8p+9a+6s

Friday, April 01, 2005

Yulon thumps Videoland, Chen Hsin-an has 26

Chen Hsin-an scored 26 points, along with Chou Shih-yuan’s 18, as Yulon pounded No.2 Videoland 98-80 in a convincing win. Yulon won six straight and boosted its record to 19-4.

VL, which handed Yulon two of its preious four losses, is apparently Yulon’s toughest opponent in the league. But not this game. Videoland had a hard time finding a basket all game long. Chen Hsin-an and Chou Shih-yuan were 19 for 33 from the field, time and again pulled the game away when VL was about to make a comeback.

In the first game, Sina didn’t miss a golden opportunity to get a win. Sina beat Bank of Taiwan and won for only the third time this season. BOT dropped three straight to 9-15, drifting further away from the playoffs.

BOT(9-15), ETSN(10-13) and Taiwan Beer(11-11) are all fighting for the No.4 seed in the playoffs. No.3 Dacin is now 14-10.

Yulon 98-80 Videoland
Yulon: Chen Hsin-an 26p(11-19 FG), Chou Shih-yuan 18p(8-14 FG)
VL: Yang Che-yi 25p, Lai Kuo-hong 14p, Lin Shin-hwa 12p+8rb

Sina 86-83 BOT
Sina: Chang Yu-lin 17p, Wang Chuan-jian 15p, Lu Jia-hao 11p+14rb
BOT: Lin Chun-feng 25p+9rb, Yang Chin-min 14p+7rb, Jian Ming-fu 14p