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Guangdong snatches CBA title over Bayi
Updated: 2004-03-04 10:15

Du Feng had a incredible season-high 36 points and 16 rebounds as Guangdong Hongyuan got their first ever Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) League title in the best-of-five finals with a 98-84 win over the defending champion Bayi Rockets on Wednesday.

Hongyuan's inside game was too strong for Rockets on Wednesday night.

Jason Jackson added 21 points and 15 rebounds and Zhu Fangyu contributed 20 points to cap Hongyuan's 22-point effort after the first half.

The Rockets made a short run in the first quarter to lead Hong Yuan 5-0, but Du Feng and Jason combined for the first 14 points of Hongyuan that transformed the deficit into an 18-7 lead when Wang Shipeng scored his only two points in the quarter, Wang had 7points in the game.

Rockets never led again.

Hongyuan made a 7-0 run in the second quarter to extend their lead to 18 points as Du came up big to 23 points.

Trailing by 22 points at the third quarter, the Rockets held Hongyuan to 21 fourth-quarter points to cut the deficit to 16 points, but the host team couldn't get any closer that Hongyuan finally won their first title in their 11-year CBA career.

Li Nan led the Rockets with 27 points and 4 rebounds, including 4-4 shooting outside three-point line, while Mo Ke added 21 pointsand 7 rebounds. Hu Ke had 7 points off the bench but the offense never seemed to get in sync and it wasn't quite enough to prevent the Rockets from losing their third straight and the title.

"Fatigue did play a part, Hongyuan is simply better than us." said A Dijiang, head coach of Rockets.

"It was a hard season for Bayi, no one estimated that Bayi willenter the final when the season began, but we made it."

Bayi had won 7 titles in the nine-year-old CBA, including five in a row, but A Dijiang said that after many players' retirements,it would take Bayi several seasons to go back to top.

"The young players are still not matured enough." said A Dijiang, "We have to play more games."

Hongyuan wasn't much better offensively, but was able to exploit the Rockets' weak defense with Jason and Du accounting formore than half the team's points.

"We thought it would be a hard game." said Hongyuan's coach Li Chunjiang, "and it was. I will say thanks to my players as they played a great game."

Hongyuan got a typical game from Jason, who hit 9 of 17 shots. The difference was Du, who was 10-of-13 from the field, including 3 three-pointers and had 16 rebounds -- four on the offensive end.

"I am very excited as I finally won my first league title." said Du, "It was a long season and a long final, but everything I have done have paid me back."

Du was enlisted in the national squad which was announced earlyon Wednesday.

"The title will encourage me greatly, especially when I will play for my country." said the 22-year-old Du.

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