SURAT THANI, Thailand (20th FIBA Asia U18 Championship for Women): Korea outshot Chinese Taipei 12-3 in first five minutes of the fourth quarter, but the deficit they had conceded in the earlier three periods bit them hard as the team went down 82-84 in a pivotal Level I game on Friday.
Taipei have now won all their three outings in the elite Level I.
Taipei led the game for the entire first three quarters and went into the last ten minutes with what looked like a comfortable 70-54 lead.
But Korea, Cha Hongjin and Seungah Lee, had different ideas.
Hongjin Cha converted all her three three-pointer attempts in the fourth quarter and Seunhah Lee scored nine points to put Korea on track.
The second of such Hongjin Cha’s three-pointer successes gave Korea the lead, albeit marginal and momentary, for the first time in the game. That was with 2:45 left in the clock.
But the late surge seemed to have sapped the Koreans of energy and ideas for the last minute scramble, and Taipei escaped away to their third win.
Chang Chi-Fang was the leader of the Taipei charge with 23 points, but only six in the fourth quarter.
Jeonghyun Lee’s game-high 27 points for Korea went in a losing cause.
“We did leave it for a little too late,” lamented Korea coach Choi Choul Kwon.
“We did remarkably well to stage the fight back. And those last minute misses always happen,” he added.
“I’m proud of the way the girls kept their composure,” said Taipei coach Chen Mei-Li.