CHINESE-Taipei rode a sizzling fourth-quarter rally then held off a late fightback to stun Japan, 70-69, in the second window of the 2019 Fiba World Cup Asian qualifiers on Thursday at Yokohama.
Trailing 56-51 with over seven minutes to play, Chinese-Taipei went on a 14-2 run to take a 65-58 lead at the 3:21 mark. The Japanese, though, refused to fold and fought back to get within two, 68-66, with 16 ticks to go.
Chinese-Taipei guard Chen Ying-chun, however, made just one of two free throws for a 69-66 lead in the next play. But Japanese point guard Ryusei Shinoyama missed both charities before another split from the stripe from Huang Tsun-han put Chinese Taipei ahead by four with six seconds left.
Japan shooter Naoto Tsuji then hit a triple, but Chinese Taipei ran out the clock to seal its first win in the World Cup qualifiers while keeping the Japanese winless.
Ying-Chun Chen and Long-Mao Hu led Chinese Taipei with 15 points apiece, while naturalized player Quincy Davis III had a double-double of 12 markers and 11 boards.
Tsuji had a game-high 26 points, while Makoto Hiejima scored 14 for Japan and naturalized player Ira Brown added 12 markers and eight rebounds.
Chinese-Taipei takes on unbeaten Australia on Sunday, while Japan eyes its first win in the qualifiers against host Gilas Pilipinas that’s looking to bounce back from its first loss suffered at the hands of the Boomers.