MANILA, Philippines – Caelan Tiongson and the Taoyuan Leopards failed to snap out of their funk in the T1 League in Taiwan after absorbing a 104-125 thrashing from the New Taipei CTBC DEA at the Xinzhuang Gymnasium on Saturday, January 22.
Filipino-American Tiongson finished with 7 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 block, and 1 steal in the defeat, which saw the cellar-dwelling Leopards lose for the seventh straight time.
It was all the DEA from the get-go after they built a 31-21 advantage at the end of the opening quarter – a lead that swelled to 23 points going into the final salvo, 101-78.
American import Cleanthony Early, a former New York Knicks forward, imposed his will against Taoyuan with 36 points and 15 rebounds in just 31 minutes of play as New Taipei cruised to its third straight victory.
Four more players finished in double figures for the DEA, with Mohammad Al Bachir Gadiaga backstopping Early with 22 points and 9 rebounds.
Hsieh Ya-Hsuan added 18 points for New Taipei, which climbed to second place behind the league-leading Kaohsiung Aquas with a 7-4 card, while Lin Ping-Sheng and Marlon Johnson chipped in 13 and 11 points, respectively.
Former NorthPort Batang Pier import Prince Ibeh went scoreless for the DEA after playing just a little under five minutes.
John Gillon once again delivered solid numbers of 29 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists, and 4 steals, but his all-around performance was not enough as the Leopards dropped to 1-9.
The Aquas, reinforced by Filipino-American Jason Brickman, will shoot for their sixth straight victory against the Taiwan Beer HeroBears, while Gilas Pilipinas guard Jordan Heading and the Taichung Suns tangle with the DEA on Sunday, January 23. – Rappler.com