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"Pursuit" is the fifty third chapter in Ahiru no Sora.

Chapter Summary

Chiaki backhand pass

After having a small friendly conversation with Yuka, Madoka rushes towards the gym. Sora relishes the opportunity as a first-time point guard and does another pass to Chiaki, who effortlessly scores and causes a defensive foul, meaning a free throw attempt. Kuzuryu High celebrates Hanazono’s effort, and they’re slowly catching up to Kitasumi High. Upon seeing, the first-year students of Kitasumi High praise Sora and Chiaki’s teamwork and further stated that Hanazono should have played the power forward position from the beginning of the match. Upon hearing, Koga informs them that Hanazono didn’t play that position because he has the technical mindset and leadership role of being a team’s point guard, and due to his tall physique, he is a bit slow.  

Chiaki has the ball possession and tries to attempt a free throw. The ball touches the rim, and Momoharu efficiently grabs the rebound. Konishi is amazed at his sempai’s rebounding ability. Momoharu passes the ball to his brother. Katori urges his teammate Tachibana to stop him. Chiaki then attempts a fake layup and does one of his signature backhand pass to Sora. A frustrated Tarou tries to stop him. Sora efficiently receives the pass and score the three-pointer, and the gap deficit is down to 4 points. Kuzuryu High has been gaining momentum. Koga, Kitasumi High instructor, is amazed at Sora’s ability to play this well at the peak of his fatigue. A well-rested Natsume returns to the match. Upon entering the game, Kenji praises Nao for tapping his bruised left leg and asks where she learned to do that. Nao comments that her family runs a sports goods store, and some of the customers are experienced, basketball trainers. So she learned from them.

Kenji Natsume returns

Kenji joins in place of Nabe. Nao tells her team that they’re almost out of time and urges them to score. Kitasumi High has the ball possession, Kenji tries to block Hasebe. The ball fumbles from Hasebe’s hands, and Yasuhara grabs the loose ball. Hasebe tries to steal from him, and the referee signals it a held ball. In basketball, a held ball happens when two players have firm possession of the ball simultaneously. In other words, the referee will signal a held ball if two players hold one or both hands firmly on the ball, and it is uncertain who has control of the ball. Kenji praises Yasuhara for his efforts. Shinichi responds that when he heard the whistle, he thought he got into another foul. Momoharu urges his teammate that these last minutes are crucial for their team and encourages them to score. Sora sees his passionate teammates and confidently tells himself that they’re going to win this match. While going on offense, Natsume urges his teammates not to get into foul trouble.

Madoka watches the intense game from the gym’s entrance and quietly wishes Sora and his teammates' good luck. Both teams are giving their 100% in gaining momentum over each other. Sora does a low pass to Momoharu, who receives it. Konishi tries to stop his sempai. Momoharu then passes the ball to his brother, and Chiaki scores the layup. Kuzuryu High then praises Hanazono for his efforts. The game that was once one-sided in Kitasumi High’s favor has now become interesting.

Characters

Reference

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