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Up and Down, Kookmin Bank Smiles at Last

Posted January. 29, 2004 22:35,   


Everything was decided by only one point.

It was the Women’s Pro Basketball winter league Woori Finance Group Cup 2004 held at Cheonan Ryu Kwan-soon Gymnasium on January 29. Cheers burst from the Kookmin Bank’s bench and sighs from the Kumho Life’s bench when the shot from Kumho Life’s player Jackson was tipped off the ring just before the end. The final score was 69-68. Kookmin Bank players rejoiced because they won in their home opener.

The game was so close that no one could foresee who would win until the final score showed. Kim Ji-yoon, having been a Kookmin Bank’s player last year, wore Kumho Life’s uniform and Cheong Seon-min, who was a Shinsegae player and two years’ senior of Kim Ji-yoon (Masan Girl’s high school), played for Kookmin Bank.

The two teams repeatedly tied ten times and this was only in the first half. Their shots from the outside were poor as they must have felt the pressure from playing an opener. Kookmin Bank succeeded in three out of eight shots, and Kumho Life only made two out of 15.

Both teams were equally matched in the low-post battle. An All-round player Cheong Seon-min (22 points) played an active role in this game and Sanford (25 points) who has been accustomed to Korean Basketball after playing four seasons for Hyundai did it as well. Kumho Life, put in two foreign players simultaneously, Sutton Brown and Jackson, and each scored 14 respectively. As well, their new commander Kim Ji-yoon scored 21 points and made six assists.

The highlight of the game was during the final moment with 2 minutes and 30 seconds remaining. Kumho Life took the lead with 66-63 by the consecutive goals of Kim Ji-yoon with 1 minute 42 seconds remaining. Then Kookmin Bank reversed the score with 67-66 as Cheong Seon-min succeeded with free throws and a valuable post shot with 46 seconds remaining.

Sanford scored the winning basket with 15 seconds remaining when Kookmin Bank was behind with 67-68.

Chang Jeon jeon@donga.com