Myanmar played their best game of the 2017 SEABA Championship Thursday afternoon, but the Malaysians proved to be too hot to handle as they still reigned victorious, 96-71, at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.
Malaysia capped off their campaign in the regional tournament with a three-game winning streak and with an even 3-3 slate, enough to finish fourth place. The Burmese, meanwhile, will head back home empty-handed with a 0-6 card.
Liaw Chee Huei anchored Malaysia’s attack with 25 points on 12-of-13 shooting alongside seven rebounds and five assists. Chin Zhi Shin made his presence felt with a double-double of 22 points and 13 rebounds.
After Myanmar kept close, 30-26, in the first half, Malaysia gained momentum early in the following half, erecting a comfortable 22-point cushion, 58-36, after a Liaw putback off a missed jumper with 6:19 to go in the third canto.
It was then Malaysia all the way, even leading by as huge as 29, 90-61, through five straight points ended by Anthony Liew’s split charities with 2:48 left to play. The said lead also served as the game’s widest gap.
Guard Heng Yee Tong supplied 12 points, three rebounds, five assists, and six steals for Malaysia. Teo Kok Hou added 11 markers, five assists, and two steals, but his output was negated by his six turnovers.
Choo Wei Hong finished with 10 points and four caroms, but did not end his SEABA stint accordingly as he met a left knee injury during a rebound play with 5:47 left in the payoff period.
The Burmese side were led by Aung with a game-high 31 points on an efficient 12-of-17 shooting, going 3-of-3 from beyond the arc. His score is the second highest output of the tourney, next to Thai Wutipong Dasom’s 40 markers.
Thein Han and Tin Min Mon backed him up with 11 and 10 markers, respectively.
Malaysia shot a notable 54 percent from the floor, and outrebounded the Burmese 44-31. However, both teams mishandled the ball plenty of times — Myanmar committed 35 turnovers, while the Malaysians had 29. But the latter scored 40 points off the former’s errors.
Malaysia (96) – Liaw 25, Chin 22, Heng 12, Teo 11, Choo 10, Choong 6, Ong 5, Mak 2, Liew 3, Ang 0, Ting 0.
Myanmar (71) – Wana 31, Thein H 11, Tin 10, Zaya 7, Wai 4, Sei 3, Aung M 3, Aung P 2, Kaung 0, Sai 0, Thein T 0.
Quarterscores: 18-6, 45-32, 75-52, 96-71.