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Spirited B.League Rivalry: Alvark and Golden Kings Split a Pair of Weekend Games

As expected, the B.League title contenders showcased their talented rosters in back-to-back dramatic contests at Yoyogi National Stadium.



Alvark Tokyo forward Zack Baranski shoots a 3-pointer in the fourth quarter as Ryukyu Golden Kings forward Vic Law defends at Yoyogi National Stadium on February 4, 2024. (B.LEAGUE)

Read the full story on SportsLook - Spirited B.League Rivalry: Alvark and Golden Kings Split a Pair of Weekend Games

In a pair of memorable B.League games on Saturday and Sunday, February 3 and 4, the fierce determination of the title-chasing Alvark Tokyo and the Ryukyu Golden Kings was on display.

Playing before 9,000-plus fans on both weekend days at Yoyogi National Stadium, the same venue where the B.League held its first-ever regular-season game (featuring the same teams) on September 22, 2016, fans of both teams had one game apiece to celebrate.

The Eastern Conference-leading Alvark dominated the 5-minute overtime period on Saturday, earning a 91-80 triumph over the reigning B.League champions.

Tokyo big man Sebastian Saiz scored a game-high 31 points on February 3 against Ryukyu. (B.LEAGUE)

Tokyo outscored Ryukyu 20-9 in OT. Spanish center Sebastian Saiz had six of his game-high 31 points in the bonus period. Meanwhile, Brazilian teammate Leonardo Meindl contributed seven of his 23 points in the final five minutes.

The Alvark found a way to win despite shooting 4 of 21 from 3-point range. 

Alvark guard Kai Toews runs the offense in the series opener. (B.LEAGUE)

Ryan Rossiter (14 points, 15 rebounds, six assists) and Kai Toews (11 points) also made key contributions for Tokyo.


Western Conference-leading Ryukyu had four double-digit scorers in the series opener: Vic Law (18 points), Ryuichi Kishimoto (14), Allen Durham (12) and Jack Cooley (10).

Ryukyu's Allen Durham attacks the basket on February 4. The veteran forward finished with a team-high 21 points. (B.LEAGUE)

Ryukyu Avenges Overtime Loss to B.League Rival Tokyo

In the Sunday rematch, the Golden Kings raced out to a 27-16 lead by the end of the first quarter and held a 47-26 advantage at halftime.

Tokyo stormed back in the second half in a spirited comeback attempt. The Alvark made 5 of 6 3-point shots in the fourth quarter, but fell short, losing 76-74.

Saiz (24 points, 11 rebounds) and Rossiter (14 points) carried the Alvark offense, combining to make 14 of 26 shots from the floor. It was nearly enough to ignite a come-from-behind win, but the rest of the team scored 36 points and shot only 12-for-34.

Continue reading the full story on SportsLook.


Author: Ed Odeven

Find Ed on JAPAN Forward's dedicated website, SportsLook. Follow his [Japan Sports Notebook] on Sundays, [Odds and Evens] during the week, and X (formerly Twitter) @ed_odeven


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