Samsung Life, missing key players, loses practice match to Fujitsu

Samsung Life suffers blowout loss in scrimmage against Fujitsu

The Samsung Life Blooms of Yongin lost 48-71 in a scrimmage against the Fujitsu Red Wave of the Nippon W-League at the 스포츠토토 Samsung Training Center (STC) on Nov. 19.

Samsung Life was not at full strength on the day, as Lee Hae-ran and Kang Yoo-rim were called up to the national team, while Bae Hye-yoon, Yoon Ye-bin, and Lee Ju-yeon did not play due to rehabilitation. Kiana Smith is also rehabbing in the United States.

Kim Dan-bi, Shin Isul, Cho Soo-ah, and Kim Han-bi were the mainstays, and Lim Kyu-ri, who had been called up to the 3-on-3 squad, had an overnight stay on Friday and participated in the game, leaving the team with nine available players.

Samsung Life’s opponent, Fujitsu, finished fifth in the regular season last season and ended its campaign with a 69-76 loss to the ENEOS Sunflowers in the quarterfinal playoffs. They finished fifth out of 14 teams in the W-League, so they’re a force to be reckoned with.

However, Fujitsu didn’t play at 100% either. Rui Machida, who played for the WNBA’s Washington Mystics, sat out the game due to illness, while Japanese internationals Yuki Miyazawa and Yunika Nakamura played but didn’t appear to push themselves too hard.

Much like the recent scrimmages between the WKBL and W-League teams, the game was dominated by Fujitsu throughout. Cho Soo-ah and Shin Isul, who usually play as sixth men, struggled to keep up with the pressure defense of the fast Fujitsu guards.

After a scoreless first quarter, Samsung Life opened the scoring with an unexpected breakthrough from Im Gyu-ri.

Im Gyu-ri led Samsung Life’s early offense, scoring eight of her nine points in the first quarter, including a breakaway layup and a basket on the fast break.

Finishing the half with a 23-36 lead, Samsung Life seemed to adjust to Fujitsu’s fast pace somewhat in the second half, settling into its normal play. Shin started hitting three-pointers and Park Hye-mi followed suit.

For Samsung Life, guard Shin Isul was the top scorer with 14 points and 3 assists, followed by Park Hye-mi with 10 points and Lim Kyu-ri with 9 points and 2 rebounds.

However, they were unable to control opposing naturalized player Joshua Temitobe (17 points, 5 rebounds) and were outrebounded by Era Moeka (14 points, 1 rebound) and Aki Fujimoto (12 points, 4 rebounds) and lost 48-71.

They lost the rebounding battle 15-23 and committed 18-10 turnovers, eight more than their opponents.

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