KT coach Song Young-jin, “I’m going with a little less stress”

“I’m going with a little less stress” (KT head coach Song Young-jin)

“Even without (Lee) Jung-hyun, we played well until the third quarter” (Sono head coach Kim Seung-ki)

Suwon KT defeated Goyang Sono 82-64 in the third round of the 2023-2024 Korean Professional Basketball League at Suwon KT Arena on Friday. With the win, KT snapped a three-game losing streak and improved to 13-7 on the season. They cut their lead over second-place Changwon LG to two games.

Paris Bass (200 cm, F) dominated the game with 28 points, five rebounds, three assists, three steals and one blocked shot. The game was decided early in the fourth quarter. Han Hee-won (194 cm, F) also had a good game with 12 points, 2 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, and 1 blocked shot. Moon Sung-gon (196 cm, F) also had a solid game with 8 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists, and 8 steals.

KT head coach Song Young-jin said after the game, “It feels good to end the losing streak. We gave up a lot of shots early on. That’s why we played a hard-fought game. The rebounding was too bad. We utilized our big lineup in the second half. The players made up for my mistakes. (Han) Hee-won broke through in the third quarter. (Moon) Sung-gon also set the tone on defense,” he said.

He continued, “(Ha) Yoon-ki is struggling both mentally and physically. We have to wait and see. We lost our balance. Their big man defense has to take a little bit of a hit because of (Paris) Bass. He’s playing well, too. We’ll find a way. I told Yunghi and (Lee) Duwon in the offseason that we have to do a better job defending big men. It’s going to be tough, but we have to get through it.”

Song Young-jin has said that he sometimes struggles with Moon Sung-gon’s aggressive defense. He worries about foul trouble.

“Sometimes he’s too eager to get help defense or steals. I told him not to try to take too much, and to watch out for fouls. I told him not to forget my form with foul trouble. In this game, I got help defense and steals at the right time. I was centered on defense. She set the tone in the fourth quarter,” he said.

Finally, he said, “We’re going with a little less stress. But we have to play a tough team right away. We have to play defense. Both team defense and one-on-one defense. Sung Gon-i is doing a great job with the other players. He’s been doing his job since practice,” he concluded the press conference.

Sono, on the other hand, has lost four straight. The eighth-ranked Sono has a season record of 8 wins and 12 losses. They have lost three straight games to KT since their inception.

Kim Kang-sun (190 cm, G) led the way with 16 points and four rebounds. Kim Min-wook (205 cm, C) also contributed with 14 points, six rebounds, four assists, two steals, and one blocked shot. Jeon Sung-hyun (F, 189 cm) also added 10 points and two rebounds.

Head coach Kim Seung-ki Sono said after the game, “We played well until the third quarter. We played hard despite the absence of Jung Hyun-i. It’s not easy for us to play because of our players’ physical condition. We felt the difference in power. The players struggled at the end. We lost concentration and made mistakes.”

“In the middle of the game, we tried to warm up the players to prepare for the fourth quarter. As a result, we had quite a few turnovers and mistakes. We don’t have anyone in our lineup that can defend. When you send out a lineup to defend, you don’t have any offense. We need to clean up our mistakes,” he concluded the press conference.


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