Decades of heartbreaks and frustrations finally ended as Korea ruled the FIBA U18 Asian Championship 2022 following their 77-73 win over Japan in the Final, Sunday night at the Azadi Basketball Hall.
Lee Juyeong led the way with 28 points, while Lee Haesol supplied 12 markers as the two joined hands in the endgame to help their side come out victorious in a tight affair between the traditional continental powerhouses.
Haesol broke the 73-all deadlock with 23 seconds left, and Juyeong settled the final count to give the Koreans their fourth Asian U18 gold medal overall.
The Japanese were led by the 15 points and 12 rebounds of Hayato Wakugawa in the heartbreaking defeat, where they lost hold of a 10-point lead early.
Meanwhile, China is flying back home with another bronze medal in the bag after beating Lebanon in convincing fashion, 85-68.
Liu Lijia led the young Team Dragon with 22 points, as Yang Hansen tallied 21 points, 14 rebounds, three assists, and three blocks on the way to replicating their finish from the previous U18 competition.
Korea, Japan, China, and Lebanon are all headed to Hungary next year for the Under-19 Worlds.
The classification games saw home team Iran take down the Philippines to finish fifth, 89-72, as Chinese Taipei beat Qatar, 93-71, to end up at seventh.