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"Now..." is the forty sixth chapter in Ahiru no Sora.

Chapter Summary

Triangle and 2 defense

This time a determined, and resolved Masahiro tries to guard Tarou but is unsuccessful. Nabe notices and then heads over to help his teammate. Chiaki then instructs Nabe that he is breaking their current defensive formation into a Triangle and 2. Triangle and 2 is a defensive formation, 2 players from the defense mark 1 player, and the remaining 3 protect the zone. Natsume urges Chiaki to let them be, and this way, both by working together have a fighting chance in stopping Tarou. Momoharu then instructs Natsume there are two players of Kitasumi High incoming from the low post and advises not to go out too far. Hanazono then informs his brother, Chiaki, that both will defend the inside zone area as if their life depends on it. Koga Kitasumi High instructor is impressed with Kuzuryu High’s new defensive formation. Upon seeing, Nao praises Nabe that his defensive method might work.  

Nabe, while guarding Tarou, urges his friend, Masahiro, not to falter and stay on guard. A frustrated Tarou tries to shake them off and is unsuccessful. Katori requests Tarou to pass him the ball. Tarou ignores his teammate's request, both Nabe and Masahiro while guarding, glances over at Katori. Tarou uses their diverted attention to his advantage and quickly passes them. Kitasumi High bench praises their senior, Tarou. Natsume, in a spur of a moment steals the ball from him. Nabe grabs the loose ball and passes it to Kenji. Koga, Kitasumi High instructor, switches his team’s defense as well to Triangle and 2. Kenji, this time guarded by two defenders and looks up to Koga and states two people won’t be enough to stop him. Natsume displays his efficient dribbling skills and quickly passes the two defenders. Koga outsmarts Natsume and places another defender. Now Kenji is being guarded by three defenders.

Kenji tries his utmost best to shake off the defenders but is unable. Tachibana steals the ball, and Kitasumi High gains possession. Katori grabs the loose ball and passes it to Konishi, who then scores the layup. After scoring a confident Konishi inform Momoharu that his team, Kitasumi High, will be victorious at the end. A frustrated Momoharu stares at him. Koga then instructs his team to go all out and take the lead. Chiaki has the ball and urges his brother Momoharu that few minutes are left at the end of the third quarter, and their team needs to score and grab the lead; this will help keep the morale up for their team heading into the next final quarter.

Sora returns to the Practice Match

Kitasumi High switches its formation to a full-court press. The full-court press is a defensive formation in which team players cover their opponents all around the court rather than simply near their own basket. Hasebe, Kitasumi High power forward, steals the ball from Chiaki and scores. The tables have turned, and Kitasumi High leads the match by one point. The score is 57 to 56. Kenji has the ball and tries his best to score. However, while he is dribbling, Tarou sees an opening and steals the ball from him. Tachibana grabs the loose ball and scores. Kitasumi High widens their lead now to three points. A frustrated and low-spirited Kuzuryu High team looks at each other. Upon noticing his teammates struggling, Sora requests Nao that he has rested long enough and she should make a substitution. Nao states only 30 seconds are left in the third quarter. However, Sora still insists, and Nao then requests the referee for a substitution.

Characters

Reference

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