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Golden Kings head to May playoffs with home sweep

Date Posted: 2009-05-01

Sporting the best record in the Basketball Japan League at 41-11, the Ryukyu Golden Kings put on a show for the home fans over the weekend, sweeping both games of the season finale against the Shiga Lakestars.

The Okinawa squad, which only a year ago wrapped up its inaugural season in the league with a dismal 10-34 record, had an easy time of it Saturday, 78-73, then capped the season with an 88-66 victory Sunday. Anthony McHenry set the tempo for the Golden Kings with 18 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists, while teammate Shigeyuki Kinjo tallied 17 points and Chris Ayer added 15.

The Golden Kings take on Rizing Fukuoka in the first playoff round in Okinawa on May 5th and 6th.

The Osaka Evessa, the second seed in the Western Conference, capped the season with a pair of on-the-road victories over the Oita HeatDevils, 100-87 and 110-105. The Evessa will meet the Takamatsu Five Arrows in first round playoffs action May 2nd and 3rd at Moriguchi City in Osaka Prefecture.

The Tokyo Apache locked in the second seed slot in the Eastern Conference with a pair of wins over the Saitama Broncos, 84-78 on Saturday and 87-63 on Sunday. The Apache’s Sunday win secured home court advantage in their playoffs round against the Niigata Albirex May 9th and 10th at the Tokyo Yoyogi National Gymnasium Annex.

The Sendai 89ers racked up a 104-96 victory over visiting Niigata Albirex BB on Saturday, then made the sweep complete Sunday with a 90-78 win and a regular season record of 30-21. The 89ers will face the Tokyo Apache in first round playoff action May 9th and 10th at Ariake Coliseum in Tokyo.

Eastern Conference leaders Hamamatsu Higashimikawa Phoenix wrapped up its regular season with a pair of wins, 101-75 and 115-74, against the hapless Toyama Grouses. The Grouses, 11-41, and the Oita HeatDevils, 8-44, end the year with the worst records in Basketball League Japan.

KARI…I’d recommend we make room for the following as a box (perhaps shaded)

Season Final Four Standings

Eastern Conference
1.Hamamatsu Higashimikawa Phoenix 36-16
2.Tokyo Apache 34-18
3.Sendai 89ers 31-21
4.Niigata Albirex BB 24-28

Western Conference
1. Ryukyu Golden Kings 41-11
2.Osaka Evessa 35-17
3.Takamatsu Five Arrows 33-19
4.Rizing Fukuoka 22-30

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