Hungry Jack's NBL
Taipans dominate University side
Cairns Taipans' off-season signings displayed positive signs in their first pre-season game yesterday afternoon at the Fish Tank. After a slow start, the more experienced and physical Taipans eased past Eastern Washington University Eagles 97 — 60. Pre-season games should never be read into too much, especially against a tired group of college kids, but the first impressions were bright from the Snakes new faces. Cleared to play just hours before the game, import Fuquan Edwin, showed his shooting stroke in the first-half with 12 points at the half. He also created issues for the Eagles offence, regularly getting his hand in the passing lane and creating turnovers. Edwin’s American mate, Travis Trice, started slow but eventually worked his way into the game. Another Taipan on debut, Mitch McCarron, provided energy off the bench, snaring a couple of loose balls and crashing the offensive boards. Edwin was the most impressive of the trio, shooting the ball with confidence and playing with intensity. Stephen Weigh did a number of good things also. The plucky Eagles began the better of the two sides, leading by seven points after almost four minutes were completed but the Taipans quickly reeled them back in and led by 23-points at halftime. With the game won, youngsters Riley Clarke, Jakobe Hunter and Joel Matysek saw court time in the second half. Taipans coach Aaron Fearne was happy with his side’s intensity. “I asked for physicality, effort and energy and they really brought those things,” Fearne said. “We shared the ball and defensively we got after it. “It was a real chance to get these new guys in our system and understand how we do things.” The dual Cairns Marlins and Taipans players did not suit up. The Taipans pre-season series continues when they face defending NBL champions Perth in Rockhampton Thursday and Sunday.