Smart Dragons wrote a piece of history by becoming the first team to post a century in the Cambodian Basketball League in their 111-63 drubbing of GL Concrete at the Olympic Stadium indoor arena on Saturday.
Mauled by the Mekong Tigers 87-66 in their opening game, Smart Dragons were bent on sending a positive message about the team’s worth and succeeded, doing it in the most spectacular fashion possible.
Unlike in the previous game, the Dragons could rely on a full roster this time – except for Jordan Bergen and Kelvin Chan – and this was reflected in their dominant display.
Making his CBL debut, Gabrielle Castaldo capped his first fast break with a two-handed dunk for the Dragons – a seemingly ominous signal to their opposition of the rampage that was to follow.
Castaldo was quickly fouled out, lasting only 12 minutes in all, but Leng Seng, Chhim Chandara and Chhim Taingyou kept the offensive going. When it came to Dragons’ defence, Philip Elliot was the man of the hour, with five blocks and 14 rebounds to his name.
For GL Concrete only Ran Noren was able to deal with the half-court defence that the Dragons so successfully orchestrated.
In the first game of the day, Mekong Tigers rolled over NSK Dream 72-56 to complete their third win in a row.
The first quarter was tight with both teams searching the wings in the hope of drive and dish until Sok Samnang gave the Tigers a seven-point advantage by sinking two three-pointers back to back.
The Tigers’ lead doubled in the second quarter and stretched to 19 by the end of the third, leaving NSK Dream plenty of work to do. The Tigers were on cruise control in the fourth, though NSK Dream did show some improvement.
Speed not size counted in Pate 310 fashioning a 65-43 win over Sabay Tigers Mosquitoes.
The most striking sight when the teams got on to the court was the size difference – the Mosquitoes were easily at least 20cm taller on average than their rivals.
Ouch Phanat and Sok Tour ensured a 14-3 advantage for Pate at the end of the first quarter and in the next 10 minutes nothing much changed
The Mosquitoes did well in the third quarter, but the 12-point deficit was weighing heavily on them and Pate drew away in the fourth.
Mekong Tigers 72 (Pheng Darath 19, Sok Samnang 18, Seath Socheat 10)
NSK Dream 56 (Chanchan Borey 10, Phorn Rithysak 9, Sok Pagna 9)
Pate 310 65 (Ouch Phanat 21, Tayyaba Adam 10. Taing Peng Kuy 9)
Sabay Tiger Mosquitoes 43 (Geoff Harry 11, Steve Chann 10, Colin Meyn 8)
Smart Dragons 111 (Leng Seng 15, Chhim Chandara 14, Ben Laird 14,
Phillip Elliott 13, Chhim Taingyou 13)
GL Concrete 63 (Ran Noren 15,
Adam Noah 9, Lim Pich 8)