Carl Tamayo shines in Ryukyu’s B.League opener
MANILA, Philippines — Carl Tamayo made an impressive 2023-24 B.League season debut as defending champion Ryukyu opened its title-retention drive with an 80-63 rout of Saga on Thursday at Saga Arena.
Tamayo sank all his four shots from the three-point line to finish with 15 points on top of five rebounds and two blocks in 40 minutes of action to begin his second season in Japan.
The University of the Philippines product played his best B.League game yet after only playing 16 games with a total of 40 points in his rookie year after joining the Golden Kings early this year.
Tamayo, a Gilas Pilipinas member, scored eight points at the half with Ryukyu leading the game, 44-34, before pulling away in the second half to log its first win of the season.
The 6-foot-7 Filipino forward only played two UAAP seasons with back-to-back finals appearances, ending UP’s 36-year title drought in Season 84 before settling for silver in the second tournament of 2022.
Vic Law powered the Golden Kings with 17 points and 12 rebounds. Ryuichi Kishimoto had 14 points, while Yoshiyuki Matsuwaki added 13 markers.
The reigning B.League champion eyes its second win against the newly-promoted Saga on Saturday.
Yoeli Childs had 23 points only for the Ballooners to lose their first Division 1 game.
The other Filipino imports Kai Sotto, AJ Edu, Matthew Wright, Ray Parks Jr., Dwight Ramos, Thirdy Ravena, and RJ Abarrientos will make their respective season debuts this weekend.