All square in ABL Finals as Lions down Slingers

Hong Kong Eastern Long Lions bounced back to beat the Singapore Slingers 92-84 yesterday at Wan Chai's Southorn Stadium and level the series 1-1 in the Asean Basketball League Finals.

The Lions displayed an early signal of intent to address the problems in their Game 1 loss, getting off the blocks quickly and aggressively.

After an inspired start by the hosts, the Slingers were unable to keep up with the Lions, trailing 24-25 at the end of the first quarter.

The visitors quickly took the lead one minute into the second quarter, but a standout performance by Lions guard Marcus Elliott, who finished with 26 points, saw the first half finish 50-40 in the Lions' favour.

Elliot was later sent off in the third quarter for repeated protesting, after he was called for a foul on the Slingers' Xavier Alexander, who scored a game-high 27 points.

Going into the final quarter 70-65, injuries hit both teams. Player of the Game Josh Boone of the Lions suffered an ankle injury while Slingers forward Mitchell Folkoff hurt his knee.

While the latter was unable to continue, Boone played on and put in a determined effort to help his team see out the game.

The Lions' victory leaves the best-of-five Finals series all square, with the Hong Kong side hoping to ride on this morale-boosting win for the next games. The series move to Singapore next as the Slingers host the Lions at the OCBC Arena on Friday for Game 3.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 19, 2017, with the headline 'All square in ABL Finals as Lions down Slingers'. Print Edition | Subscribe