The Boys' Stubbornness and the Girls' Pride (男の意地と女のプライド, Otoko no Iji to Onna no Puraido) is the eleventh episode of the Ahiru no Sora anime. The opening theme is Happy Go Ducky! which is performed by the pillows. The ending theme is Tsubasa which is performed by saji.
Before the beginning of the match, Nao explains the rules and conditions, that the game will play 10-minute halves, and each team will get one timeout. The interesting practice match begins, and Momoharu easily wins the tip-off. Madoka gets angry at her senior for losing the tip-off. Sayuri replies she got a bit intimidated by Momoharu. Chiaki has possession of the ball and passes it to Kenji. Youko Kokubu is guarding him, and she is the girls' team shooting guard. Kenji uses his height and speed to his advantage and scores. The girls' team tries to answer back, but they are unsuccessful. Madoka is guarding Sora and remembers his weakness that Sora cannot score from the left side. Sora, this time confidently, head towards the left side of the court and makes the three-pointer. Madoka is shocked and asks Sora when did he perfect his shooting from the left side? Sora replies that he has been practicing, especially from the left side. He also credited Yasuhara, Nabe, and Masahiro for playing defense while he practiced making threes. Nao, meanwhile, observes the match and then calls for a timeout.
Nao instructs the girls' team to do a zone defense, a formation to surround your own goal and protect it. After the brief timeout, the match resumes. Chiaki informs Momoharu that the girls' team, this time, is not focusing on guarding Sora. Chiaki passes the ball to Sora and advises him the key to defeating zone defense is by having a capable scoring shooting guard. Sora heads toward the three-point line and attempts to scores. Madoka efficiently guards him. Sora realizes that this isn't zone defense. It's a Box and One, which is a formation that involves four people defending inside the zone (paint area), and the remaining one, usually a tall player, is guarding the opposing team's dominating scoring player.
The 10 minutes first-half finishes. Nao, during the timeout, advises Madoka that in the Box and One formation, Sora might try to score from inside. She should remain calm and let her other teammates stop him. According to the plan, Sora confidently tries to score from the inside, Youko blocks him, and now the real and intense match between the two sides begins. Madoka has the ball and sees a frustrated Sora, and she confidently passes the ball to her friend Youko. A confused Sora tries to stop her. Upon seeing him, Kenji gets furious and advises Sora to stay on his mark and not chase after the ball. Youko passes the ball to Madoka, and she uses her height as an advantage against Sora and scores. Afterwards, Sora notices his teammates are nowhere near inside the paint area. Kenji informs Sora that the girls' team purposely dragged him underneath the goal. That is called isolation.
The match resumes, and Sora tells himself this feels like Shinmaruko High all over again. Kenji has the ball possession, and Youko is carefully guarding him. During the timeout, Nao advises Youko to be cautious of Kenji's speed and agility. He will try to go for a quick basket by passing through 4 of her teammates, and they should improve their defense against his mid-range shooting. According to Nao's plan, Kenji tries to go for a quick basket. This time three defenders are guarding him. Nabe signals him to pass the ball, Kenji ignores him and gets himself in an offensive foul. Momoharu gets angry and tells Kenji that he was too reckless and should have given the ball to Nabe.
Upon seeing Kenji's offensive foul, Nao comments that Kenji's sense of responsibility as a forward supports his confidence. The amount of talent he has can sometimes become a weakness. The girls' team has possession of the ball, Youko passes to her teammate Sayuri, and she scores the three-pointer. Madoka then celebrates with her teammates. A frustrated Kenji informs his colleagues that this is all Nao's doing. Chiaki tells his teammates not to worry; he has a plan up his sleeve. Nao notices a change in Chiaki's expression, and she becomes interested in how will her Afro-senpai counter their strategy.
Characters by Appearances
- Madoka Yabuchi
- Masahiro Saki
- Yasuhara Shinichi
- Ryuuhei Nabeshima
- Chiaki Hanazono
- Sora Kurumatani
- Kenji Natsume
- Nao Nanao
- Momoharu Hanazono
- Masayoshi Satsuki
- Storyboard: Oguroten
- Director: Makoto Xu
- Animation Director: Mino Honda, Mayuko Matsumoto, Naomi Ide, Masakazu Ishikawa