The Daegu Korea Gas Corporation, which has been on a steep rise in professional basketball lately, has caught up with second-place Seoul SK. Their recent four-game winning streak seemed to come to an end with a loss to the Hyundai Mobis in Ulsan, but they quickly turned things around and are now 5-1. Acting head coach Kang Hyuk applauded the players’ determination, but drew a line in the sand, saying, “It’s not time to think about the playoffs yet.”

Speaking at a press conference after the team’s 88-75 victory over SK in an away game of the 2023-24 Korean Basketball Association (KBO) at Jamsil Student Gymnasium in Seoul on Nov. 22, Kang Hyuk said, “Even though we were missing Lee Dae-heon and Kim Nak-hyun, the will to win was very strong from the first quarter. We played solid defense, 토토사이트 and Andrew (Nicholson) did a good job offensively,” he reflected on the game.

“The only bad thing was that we had some turnovers and misses in the third quarter,” Kang said, “but the players were very focused even though it was tough. I think all the players did a great job. I’m very thankful. It’s the first time this season we’ve played SK on their home turf, and the fact that they didn’t get intimidated and played well in front of so many fans was a key factor in our victory.”

“I think Shin Seung-min did a great job today,” said Kang Hyuk, who also praised a number of other players. Shin had seven points and five rebounds on the night, and Kang said, “He was a great addition to the team, regardless of his stats. We needed him. He played very good defense. He battled well with Oh Seung-geun and Choi Buk-kyung. After the game, the players also praised Shin Seung-min, saying, ‘You did a good job’.”

With the victory, KOGAS has now won five games in a row. It’s a remarkable turnaround from their early season struggles. Kang Hyuk said, “There were some messy parts in the beginning. Our defense gave up over 90 points, but as time went on, we gained a lot of trust and faith in each other on defense. I think the team became sticky.”

With their steep rise, the gap between them and the sixth-place Ulsan Hyundai Mobis has been reduced to four games. At this point, expectations for the playoffs could be high. However, Kang Hyuk says, “It’s not time to worry about the playoffs. I think it’s good for the fans to see how we’re changing little by little, and we’ll do our best in every game,” he said.

Nicholson led KOGAS with 33 points and nine rebounds, while Belangel added 17 points and five assists and Park Ji-hoon finished with 13 points. KOGAS will try to make it two in a row when they host Busan KCC on Nov. 25.

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