The Taipei Fubon Braves clinched the P. LEAGUE+ championship for the second consecutive year after edging past the Hsinchu Jko Lioneers by four points in Game 5 of the professional basketball league’s finals series Monday.
The latest 108-104 win at Hsinchu County Stadium meant that the Braves wrapped up the title with a 4-1 record in the best-of-seven finals series.
It is the second championship win for the Braves, who won the title in the league’s inaugural 2020-2021 season.
Braves forward Mike Singletary also completed a personal double, winning the finals series MVP award for the second year in a row after posting a double-double of 43 points and 13 rebounds in Monday’s game.
After the game, Singletary thanked his team’s fans and said he appreciated their support.
“Fubon fans, you guys showed up and showed us so much love today. We wouldn’t have been able to do this all season without you guys. I’m so thankful for you guys, and more importantly, I’m thankful for my team,” Singletary said.
“Everybody told us we were too old to win a championship, and look, we’re here right now, right? We just got so many guys who are just vets, man and come to play when it’s time to play. This team is amazing. This is the best team, obviously in the P. LEAGUE+, [and] the best team I’ve been on,” Singletary said.
In Monday’s game, played in front of a sell-out crowd of 8,000 fans, the Braves shot ahead 60-50 at halftime before the Lioneers clawed the game back to 105-102 thanks to a clutch three-pointer from guard Oscar Kao with 31 seconds left in the game.
On the next possession, Braves forward Lin Chi-chieh missed a layup and saw the rebound caught by Lioneers forward Nick Faust.
Faust dished the ball to Kao to set up a dime for teammate Hsiao Shun-yi under the basket to close the gap to 105-104 with only 22 seconds left, forcing the Braves to call a time-out.
A quick foul after the Braves’ inbound sent Singletary to the three-throw line, where he made one from two.
Lioneers forward Jay Kuo missed the next shot from beyond the three-point line, forcing the Hsinchu team to immediately foul to stop the clock.
This again sent Singletary to the free-throw line with just under nine seconds left under the final buzzer.
Singletary sunk both free throws before Kao ran a coast-to-coast play that shot the ball out of bounds with only two seconds left. The Braves inbounded the ball, soon followed by a sea of blue streamers raining down at the buzzer to celebrate the Braves’ 108-104 victory and a second title.