- Niigata-Okamoto, Niigata (center) launching an attack on Ehimesports/photonews/photonews_nsInc_202109200001161-0.html” class=”pict_icon-zoomin”>
◇ 20th ◇ Niigata / Aore Nagaoka ◇ Audience 2167
B1 Niigata Albirex BB defeated B2 Ehime Orange Vikings 89-87 and finished the preseason with all three wins. Captain Hiryu Okamoto (28) scored a buzzer beater reversal 3-point shot just before the end of the game in the 4th quarter (Q), 86-87.
The new captain of Niigata excited the audience at the home. “I thought I’d hit it without hesitation.” When Okamoto got a pass from SG Endo Zen (22) who cut into the inside at the left corner, he immediately jumped. The ball fits on the net at the same time as the buzzer sounds. The excitement of the teammates on the Niigata bench was transmitted to my back.
Only these 3 points were scored on this day. In the early stages, there was a scene where the air ball and free were removed. Still, “I’ve been practicing 3-point shooting this season since before the opening.” I was confident that I would decide even if I was left to one of the games at the last minute. Director Fujitaka Hiraoka (47) praised, “In the end, the ball turned to Hiryu, who has continued to inspire the team. You can stop in that situation. A player with a strong mentality.”
Niigata has now finished three pre-season games with all wins. “There are many challenges, such as pick-and-roll defense and zone attacks.” Coach Hiraoka gave a reflection on the close match against B2 for the opening card against Kyoto on October 2nd and 3rd. At the same time, he said, “It is very important to win even in the preseason. It is related to the motivation of the team.”
“There are many tough games even in B1. I learned to keep doing it patiently.” A dramatic white star before the opening. Okamoto felt the meaning of being able to leave a result.