“I want to be a player who strives to be better than players my age and one or two years older.”
Yongsan defeated Seongnam 64-62 in a Group B game of the Seoul Gyeongin Gangwon Weekend League 2023 at Gyeongbok High School Gymnasium on Tuesday to get off to a good start in their quest for the Wangjung Championship. Teams must finish in the top three of their respective groups to qualify for the Wangjung Championship.
Yongsan defeated Seongnam 63-47 in the 스포츠토토 qualifiers of the last Federation Championships. The game was a tightly contested affair throughout. At one point in the fourth quarter, they went up by 10 points and had another double-digit lead, but they had to fight back to win by one point.
Leading the way was Kwak Gun-woo (182 cm, G). He scored a game-high 27 points to go along with eight rebounds, three assists, and three steals.
After the win, Kwak said, “The first minute was good, but after that, we didn’t make any layups and we didn’t play well, so it was a hard win. We can do better, but it didn’t work out today (Tuesday),” he said, reflecting on the game.
“We need to be more active on defense. We wanted to stop Seongnam’s No. 2 (Lee Jae-sung, 21 points, 18 rebounds, 12 assists) and No. 7 (Park Kyung-min, 18 points, 2 rebounds, 2 steals), but it didn’t work,” he said, adding, “Tomorrow (Nov. 11), we need to be more active on defense.”
Kwak Gun-woo, who was held to just seven points in the first half of the game but scored 10 points in each of the third and fourth quarters, said, “In the first half, I was too quick to look at my offense. I should have looked at my teammates’ opportunities as well, but I threw up a strange layup while looking at my own offense.” “In the second half, I decided to do it right, so I did it right,” he said, reflecting on his game.
Kwak Gun-woo, who scored back-to-back runs when trailing by one point, said, “When it was 10 points, I thought I could win, but then I relaxed.” “I didn’t think about it, I just tried to score like I usually do, because if I don’t score, I’m going to lose,” he said of the moment he scored the decisive points.
When asked about his strengths and weaknesses, Kwak said, “I’m good at breaking through, and I’m confident in my passing and fast breaks.” “What I need to improve is to make fewer mistakes in front of me, and I need to make sure that I finish my shots. We need to work harder for that.”
Coach Shin Seok Yong-joong once told Kwak Gun-woo that he needs to learn to stop when he goes in.
“I need to learn how to stop, but I only want to shoot layups, so I need to work on stopping,” Kwak said. “My shots don’t go in because I don’t do what my coach tells me to do. On defense, I do what the coach tells me.”
Kwak Gun-woo, who is also learning a lot from A coach Lee Jung-seok Yongsanjoong, said, “He wants a lot from me because he used to be a good player, but I can’t do it.” “He likes to play fast, and I need to work on stopping. I can’t do that well yet.”
“I want to be a player who strives to be better than players my age and one or two years older,” he said, adding that he hopes to be like Heo Hoon and Kim Sun-hyung.