Al Riyadi made history by becoming the first-ever champions of the WASL-West Asia League with a dominant 114-100 victory over Gorgan in Game 2 of the Final, held at the Nouhad Nawfal Sports Complex in Zouk Mikael. The home team, boosted by enthusiastic fans, took control during the middle quarters and secured their title, making it a significant addition to their impressive collection.
Head coach Ahmad Farran expressed his gratitude to the Al Riyadi fans for their crucial support and described the game as an incredible experience. He emphasized the importance of this victory, stating that going back to Iran was not an option for them, and their meticulous preparation paid off.
Duop Reath was the standout player with 29 points, 6 rebounds, and strong all-around contributions. Wael Arakji added 21 points and Kevin Murphy contributed 18 as they played a pivotal role in Al Riyadi’s second-quarter surge, giving them a commanding 58-43 lead at halftime.
Gorgan attempted a comeback in the third quarter but fell short, with Amir Saoud and Hayk Gyokchyan helping Al Riyadi regain control. Saoud finished with 18 points, and Gyokchyan contributed 16 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 assists as Al Riyadi shot an impressive 58 percent from the field.
Perry Petty led Gorgan with a triple-double performance of 29 points, 12 rebounds, and 12 assists, while Behnam Yakhchali had 19 points and 9 rebounds. Antanas Udras and Sajjad Pazrofteh also made significant contributions. However, Gorgan couldn’t overcome their deficit, and Mohammad Jamshidi was limited to just 6 points.
Gorgan’s head coach, Mehran Hatami, cited fatigue and a challenging local league game as factors in their performance but expressed optimism for improvement in the future.
Both Al Riyadi and Gorgan, along with third-placer Beirut Club, will represent the West Asia League in the highly-anticipated WASL Final 8 scheduled for June.