Mon, 18 Sep 2000

IM Texmaco comes back to beat Dwidasa Mitra

JAKARTA (JP): After a poor start, Indonesia Muda Texmaco (IM) regained their form to beat league newcomer Dwidasa Mitra 92-75 on Sunday in the third leg of the 2000 Nuvo Kobatama national basketball league.

In the second match of the day, Pacific Caesar Surabaya bagged a narrow 86-85 win over another Surabaya-based team, Wismilak CLS.

Guard Lucky Pinontoan made amends for his failure to execute free throws that cost his team victory on Saturday by sinking two of them to give IM a commanding 92-72 lead, with just 22 seconds remaining.

Captain Andries Posumah shot a three-pointer for Dwidasa to reduce the deficit three seconds before the final buzzer.

IM remained in fourth place after Sunday's victory, but team manager Lexi Rohi said his squad would win in Tuesday's match against Aspac. IM lost to Aspac 48-71 in the first leg in Malang, East Java.

"We will try our best to beat Aspac. We will still have one day to consolidate our stamina and strategy. We have to win because we want to ease our way to the final four in November," he said.

Lexi said that his team had aimed to win three out of four games in the series. But lady luck was not on the club's side when it lost to Mahaka Satria Muda 66-68 on Saturday.

Aspac team manager Irawan Haryono said his team was ready to face IM. He also expressed hope that IM could perform its best.

"Three Jakarta teams -- Aspac, IM and Mahaka -- are basically equal in ability. But I don't know why IM players are a letdown every time they play us. Maybe because we normally beat them; but it's not a reason not to play well," he said.

Dwidasa, making its debut in the first division, was quick to begin with but a lack of good shooters blew away its brave effort to notch up a win.

Team manager Andre Mamuaya blamed the team's poor performance on the absence of coach Ersa Putra.

"Our coach left for Malaysia for a family commitment. In his absence, our players relied too much on Andries, giving him many things to do inside the court. He had to control his own play while at the same time he had to direct his teammates," Andre said.

Pacific's South-Korean coach Sung Jae-sik said his team was short of good center players.

"Our players are still young. But they are improving gradually," he said, adding that his club had a good chance against Bima Sakti on Tuesday.

Late on Saturday, Aspac maintained its winning streak by outclassing Bali Jeff Citra Satria Pelita (CSP) 92-87.

Aspac tops the league's standings, followed by Mahaka Satria Muda and Panasia Indosyntec. On Monday, Aspac will meet Mahaka, while Dwidasa plays CSP. (ivy)