Sunday, May 16, 2010

Yulon wins 2010 Taiwan professional basketball title

The Yulon Luxgen beat defending champion Dacin Tigers 71-70 in Game 6 of the 2010 Super Basketball League (SBL) Finals to win their first SBL title in four years.

Yulon, which last hoisted the championship trophy in 2006, won the title despite being the only team in the seven-team SBL not to hire a foreign player.

Yulon point guard Chen Chih-chung, 33, was named the championship series MVP for his consistent performance throughout the best-of-seven series.

Dacin had chances to extend the series to a Game 7 and tied the score at 70-70 after a dunk by American import Byron Allen with 28.3 seconds remaining.

But on the next possession, Yulon forward Yang Che-yi was sent to the line on a foul by Dacin forward Chen Tse-wei with only 1.5 seconds remaining. Yang made the first of two free throws to put his team ahead and intentionally missed the second, leaving Dacin without time to get off a potential game-winning shot.

Yulon, which had led most of the game, seemed headed for a breakdown after starting center Tseng Wen-ting fouled out with 6: 05 to go in the third quarter. But veteran sub Wu Chih-wei picked up the slack, scoring 11 of his 13 points in the final two quarters.

After clinching the title, Tseng said the team was dedicating the championship to its late head coach Chien Yi-fei, who passed away in 2007.

Yulon won three straight titles from 2004-2006 during the league's first three years but had only made it to the SBL finals once in the last three years, losing to Taiwan Beer 4-2 in 2008.

The Yulon Group, which operates the Yulon Luxgen men's basketball team and Taiyuan Textile women's basketball team, also became the first team owner to win men's and women's basketball titles in the same year. Taiyuan won its first Women's Super League Basketball League (WSBL) title earlier this week.