Japan B. League

Revitalized Ramos finds shooting touch as Toyama clamps Hiroshima

JR Isaga
Revitalized Ramos finds shooting touch as Toyama clamps Hiroshima

HOT. Dwight Ramos celebrates with his Toyama Grouses teammates.

JAPAN B. LEAGUE

A day after playing limited minutes, Dwight Ramos bounces back strong with 15 points on 5-of-7 shooting and 3-of-5 from three

MANILA, Philippines – The Toyama Grouses averted a weekend sweep loss to start the new year in the Japan B. League as they blew out the Hiroshima Dragonflies in a 90-74 wire-to-wire road win on Sunday, January 2.

After a concerning three-minute appearance a day prior, Dwight Ramos bounced back strong with a 15-point eruption on 5-of-7 shooting and 3-of-5 from three in just 18 minutes off the bench to go with 3 rebounds and 1 steal.

The Gilas Pilipinas stalwart’s scoring spurt started early on for the Grouses, which turned an early 6-all tie to a 20-9 breakaway off a 14-3 run capped by a Ramos triple at the 1:22 mark of the first quarter.

This early blitz set the tone for pretty much the entire game, as Hiroshima never got close enough to threaten Toyama’s lead that peaked as high as 16, 90-74, off a late Naoki Uto free throw for the final score.

Uto, after previously averaging just 5.6 points, broke out for a game-high 21 points, tying import teammate and former NBA player Brice Johnson, who scattered 21 markers, 9 rebounds, 4 steals, 3 assists, and 1 block.

Former PBA import Joshua Smith also added 14 points, 9 boards, 3 dimes, and 3 steals as the 9-17 Grouses collectively chipped in amid top reinforcement Julian Mavunga’s rare scoreless outing.

Meanwhile, Charles Jackson paced Hiroshima in the loss with 19 points on a near-perfect 6-of-7 clip, backstopped by local guard Naoto Tsuji’s 17 markers, 3 boards, and 2 dimes.

Ramos and Toyama now move on to face the Akita Northern Happinets next weekend, January 8 and 9.

Over at Division 2, the Aomori Wat’s also found their collective shooting touch, but it still wasn’t enough as the Rizing Zephyr Fukuoka cruised to an 86-75 victory.

Gilas project big man Kemark Cariño still couldn’t find his path to longer playing time, as he finished scoreless with 1 rebound in under 4 minutes for the 2-25 Wat’s, which will now prepare for the Monday, January 3 rematch at 1 pm, Manila time. – Rappler.com