Japan B. League

Ravena brothers shine as Japan B. League action gets underway 

Martin Mendoza

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Ravena brothers shine as Japan B. League action gets underway 

ON TARGET. Shiga guard Kiefer Ravena goes for a jumper in the Japan B. League.


Kiefer Ravena explodes for 21 points, while Thirdy Ravena flirts with a double-double as their respective teams start the 2023-2024 Japan B. League season on a high note

MANILA, Philippines – Gilas Pilipinas stalwarts Kiefer and Thirdy Ravena both came to play on opening day as their respective teams emerged victorious in their 2023-2024 Japan B. League season debuts on Saturday, October 7.  

Among the 11 Filipino imports who saw action on Saturday, it was Kiefer who shone the brightest as he exploded for 21 points on 5-of-7 clip from three-point area, 1 rebound, 4 assists, and 2 steals in the Shiga Lakes’ 100-86 win over the Kumamoto Volters in Division 2. 

Thirdy, meanwhile, flirted with a double-double of 11 points and 9 rebounds to help the San-En NeoPhoenix take down the Kawasaki Brave Thunders in Division 1, 86-75. 

Like the Ravena brothers, Ray Parks made his presence felt for the Nagoya Diamond Dolphins as they started their campaign in Division 1 on the right foot with a 79-70 win against the Sunrockers Shibuya.

Parks delivered 10 points, 5 rebounds, and 2 assists, including a team-high plus-minus of +16 for Nagoya. 

AJ Edu and Robert Bolick also breached double-digit scoring in their B. League debuts for the Toyama Grouses and the Fukushima Firebonds, respectively, but their efforts weren’t enough to help their teams claim a victory.

Edu recorded 10 points on 3-of-5 shooting, 3 rebounds, and 1 block in Toyama’s 93-73 defeat at the hands of the Osaka Evessa in Division 1.

Bolick also had 10 points on 4-of-6 clip from the field, 5 rebounds, and 2 assists in Fukushima’s 95-90 loss to Roosevelt Adams and the Yamagata Wyverns over in Division 2. 

Adams, though, was a non-factor for Yamagata in the win as he suited up for only 1 minute and 12 seconds. 

RJ Abarrientos, likewise, made his debut for the Shinshu Brave Warriors in Division 1 as they took down the Ibaraki Robots, 84-79.

Abarrientos, who previously played for the Ulsan Hyundai Mobis Phoebus in the Korean Basketball League (KBL), where he was hailed the 2022-2023 Rookie of the Year, had a quiet showing for Shinshu as he only produced 6 points on 3-of-6 shooting, 2 rebounds, and 1 assist in close to 13 minutes of play.

Abarrientos’ Filipino-Japanese teammate Matt Aquino was not fielded in the contest. 

Still in Division 1, Carl Tamayo and the defending champion Ryukyu Golden Kings came out on top against the Saga Ballooners, 80-79. 

Fresh off a career-high 15-point performance in their B. League opener two days ago, Tamayo was limited to just 5 points this time around, to go along with 10 rebounds, 1 steal, and 1 block in 31 minutes of action.

Dwight Ramos, Matthew Wright, and Greg Slaughter were also held to single-digit outputs on Saturday. 

Ramos put up just 5 points on 2-of-12 shooting, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals in the Levanga Hokkaido’s 69-59 loss to the Akita Northern Happinets.

Wright, meanwhile, finished with only 4 points, 4 rebounds, and 2 steals as the Kyoto Hannaryz bowed to the Yokohama B-Corsairs, 81-67. 

Finally, Slaughter had 3 points and 1 rebound for the Rizing Zephyr Fukuoka in their 77-70 loss to the Ehime Orange Vikings. 

Kai Sotto is the lone Filipino import who was listed as inactive on Saturday as his Hiroshima Dragonflies fell prey to the Fighting Eagles Nagoya, 74-65. – Rappler.com 

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