Sometimes, all it takes is luck.
For Korea, the SJ Belangel buzzer-beater that snapped its winning streak over Gilas Pilipinas was just a “lucky shot.”
Belangel gave the Philippines its first win over Korea in eight years after draining the buzzer-beating three-pointer in their nail-biting 81-78 victory in the FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers on Wednesday, June 16.
“It was a lucky shot,” said newly installed Korea head coach Cho Sang-hyun through a translator.
With 2.9 ticks left, Belangel received the inbound pass from Dwight Ramos, stopped on a dime, and used a pump fake to create a slight separation from Korean defender Lee Seoung-hyun.
Lee still managed to contest the shot, but an off-balanced Belangel banked in the game-winner just as time expired.
“We actually planned a switch in the last two seconds so that there was no space to take a shot,” said Cho.
“There was nothing we can do to fix it. Maybe, on second thought, we [should] have done a trap. But overall, it was a lucky shot. There was no way of defending it.”
Now, Cho and Korea return to the drawing board as they try to finish the Asia Cup Qualifiers with a pair of wins.
The Philippines remains as the only unbeaten team in Group A with a 4-0 record as Korea slips to 2-1. Indonesia holds a 1-2 record, while Thailand has dropped all four assignments.
Korea will tangle with Indonesia on Thursday, June 17, and the Philippines again on Sunday, June 20.
“It is just the beginning of our new journey because I just became the head coach of the Korean basketball team,” Cho said.
“We got a lot of games coming up. We got some time to prepare ourselves and we got time to improve ourselves.” – Rappler.com