Kiefer Ravena got the last laugh over his young brother Thirdy as Shiga Lakestars pulled off a massive turnaround to stun San-En NeoPhoenix, 93-83, in their 2021-22 B.League season opener Saturday at Ukaruchan Arena.

/ 3 October 2021

Kiefer, who played his first Japan B.League game, led a scorching run for Shiga Lakestars where they erased a 22-point deficit to get the better of the San-En Neophoenix.

The Lakestars were down by as many as 22 points, 37-59, late in the third quarter and 13 entering the fourth, but Kiefer sparked the home team’s 21-0 run to grab a commanding 82-74 lead with 3:49 left in the fourth canto.

It took eight minutes – 1:55 left in the clock – before San-En was able to score a field goal capped by a Robert Carter corner three.

At that point the Shiga Lakestars strengthened their defense and offense, outrunning San-En in the final salvo, 30-9.

Kiefer made his presence be felt in his B.League debut, unleashing 11 points, eight assists, three rebounds, and three steals without any turnovers in 25 minutes of play for Shiga including rallying the Lakestars to a sterling comeback in the last frame of the match. 

Ovie Soko led Lakestars with his 18 points and 11 rebounds, 11 of which coming in Shiga’s 30-point fourth-quarter eruption, while Sean O’Mara managed 17 points, nine boards, and three assists.

Novar Gadson added 16 points, four rebounds, and three assists off the bench, and Teppei Kashiwagura shot 3-of-6 from deep for his 14 points.

Meanwhile, San-en import Elias Harris top-scored the meltdown loss with a game-high 19 points on 8-of-11 shooting.

Thirdy, who kicked off his sophomore season for San-En, finished with 11 points, six rebounds, and two steals.

San-En Neophoenix and Shiga Lakestars will meet anew on Sunday, October 3. 

The Scores

Shiga 93 – Soko 18, O’mara 17, Gadson 16, Kashiwagura 14, Ravena 11, Ozawa 9, Hayashi 8, Nomoto 0, Shibuta 0, Imagawa 0, Moriyama 0, Kawamata 0.

San-en 83 – Harris 19, Tsuyama 15, Ravena 11, Carter 10, Knox 10, Matsuwaki 7, Sugiura 4, Tawatari 4, Ota 2, Tsuya 1, Yamauchi 0.

Quarters: 15-25, 35-52, 61-74, 93-83.