News

R13 Wrap: Hawks hot property

Illawarra has entered 2016 as the NBL’s hottest property with yet another big win, while both Cairns and Sydney put prior fourth-quarter turmoil behind them in solid wins. With two consecutive victories Melbourne looks to have righted their season in the nick of time, but Round 13 belonged to one individual – Daniel Kickert for his perfect shooting night on Wednesday. Melbourne United 100 def Sydney Kings 90, Sydney Olympic Park Daniel Kickert’s flawless 10-of-10 shooting night (plus 3-of-3 free throws) and Hakim Warrick’s 21 points helped Melbourne United to their second-consecutive win on Wednesday. Sydney’s Josh Childress returned to NBL action with a typical all-court performance – rocking the rim, stroking the jumpshot, diming teammates, getting on the glass and blocking shots – on his way to 27 points, eight rebounds, three assists and four blocks. Tom Garlepp chipped in with 22 points on 9-of-15 FGs, but the headlines were written for Kickert who finished with 26 points and four boards. Both teams came out of half time in the same high-scoring fashion as the first, but only one team could sustain it as Melbourne scored nine points without reply in 2:22 in the first five minutes of the quarter. Childress single-handedly tried to keep Sydney in the contest with five quick points, but the home side could not stop United – which rattled off six field goals in a row at one point – on their way to a 28-20 term. Warrick rocked the rim twice in the final term as United got their baskets a little easier than Sydney, but the final quarter was underpinned by defence and Melbourne held on to win by 10. BOX SCORE Cairns Taipans 73 def New Zealand Breakers 66, Cairns Convention Centre The Cairns Taipans continued their defensive ways at home, keeping the reigning-champion Breakers to their lowest score this season – five fewer points than their Round 1 loss at Adelaide. In fact, the Taipans’ defence is so good at home that if all of their games were at the Cairns Convention Centre the Snakes would by far lead the league in ‘opponent points per game’, conceding four ppg fewer than Perth (81ppg) this season. Playing without sparkplug point guard Markel Starks and sniper Stephen Weigh, their replacements in the starting lineup Shaun Bruce and Torrey Craig (who received his first start as a professional) ran riot with a career-high 17 and 21 points respectively. Bruce (17, five rebounds, four assists) outplayed former League MVP Cedric Jackson (eight points, four rebounds, six assists) who has now failed to score in double digits in his last three games. New Zealand got 40 of their 66 points from shooting guard Corey Webster (24 points) and centre Charles Jackson (16 points, 12 rebounds), while four of the Taipans’ five starters managed double digits. Following a 29-26 first half, the game busted open in the final seven seconds of the third term as Cairns forced a five-second inbound violation from Shane McDonald before Cameron Gliddon nailed a three as the buzzer sounded. The Snakes executed well down the stretch after embarrassing fourth-quarter collapses in their previous two games to claim a critical win. BOX SCORE Illawarra Hawks 98 def Townsville Crocodiles 74, Townsville Entertainment Centre Illawarra made sure they went into 2016 the competition’s form team, smashing Townsville in front of the Swamp’s biggest crowd this season. The Hawks jumped Townsville right out of the blocks with crippling full-court pressure that forced 10 turnovers in the first quarter alone. Illawarra’s 18-point quarter-time lead was soon 25, before Crocs crowd favourite Mitch Norton (18 points, four assists) sparked a quick-fire 11-0 run to get his side back to a deficit of 18 at half time. But the ruthless Hawks hit back, leading by 29 with two minutes left in the third period, and keeping the foot down to win the fourth period when the game was well beyond doubt. Norton and Steindl (16 points) were the Crocs’ only consistent sources of offence while Illawarra got regular production from their Big Three, plus a drought-breaking 16 points from sharpshooter Oscar Forman. Hawks Kevin White and AJ Ogilvy summed up the 40 minutes in one late-game play where White was double-teamed in the backcourt by Norton and Nick Kay, only to poke his head through the trap and kick ahead to an Ogilvy for an uncontested slam – something the Crocs failed to accomplish time after time throughout the night. BOX SCORE Sydney Kings 87 def Cairns Taipans 77, Sydney Olympic Park The Sydney Kings showed a fourth-quarter poise that had been sorely missed in previous rounds, as they kept Cairns at bay on Saturday. Jason Cadee and Josh Childress top-scored with 21 points apiece, scoring in crucial moments – including Childress’ triple to drag the margin back to double digits with 1:36 remaining. Again without both Markel Starks and Stephen Weigh, the Taipans got their scores through NYE heroes Torrey Craig and Shaun Bruce with 17 each. Not often does a team go down when winning the rebound count by 14 but the Snakes failed to even translate those extra possessions into shots, turning the ball over 14 times to Sydney’s five. While Bruce and captain Cameron Gliddon combined for 8/16 from downtown, Craig and Mark Worthington had jumpshooting nights to forget, landing just 1-of-15 from behind the line. Cairns held a 20-14 lead at quarter time until Sydney struck with a 12-0 run midway through the second term. While Cairns played their typical stingy defence, they could not put the ball in the bucket (38 per cent on the game) as Sydney held the Snakes at arm’s length the rest of the evening. BOX SCORE The season winds back up after the festive season with five games in Round 14, as Cairns and Perth open the week in the north on Wednesday. Melbourne play their first game at the State Netball and Hockey Centre this season in their Illawarra clash on Thursday while Adelaide hits the North Shore Events Centre on Friday, followed by the Reptile Rumble in Cairns later that night. Finally, the Hawks travel to Sydney for the season’s final NSW derby on Saturday.
FEATURE

Caroline to Bring Energy

21 hours ago

FREE AGENCY

Taipans Complete Roster with Experienced Point Guard

1 day ago

FEATURE

Gliddon Eyes Return to Best

1 day ago

FREE AGENCY

Perth Add NBL1 Standout as DP

2 days ago

NEWS

Report: Makur Maker Signs NBA Deal

3 days ago

NBL23

Analysis: Breakout Candidates

3 days ago

NEWS

Humphries Drawn to United "Prestige"

3 days ago

FREE AGENCY

36ers Add “Extra Edge” to Roster

3 days ago

NEWS

NBL Trading Cards Return With Topps

3 days ago

GAME REPORT

Gaels Overrun Phoenix in OT Thriller

3 days ago

LaMelo Ball Leads Hawks, Taipans Beat Bullets Again

16 September 2019

Fourth Place Frustration for Boomers in China

15 September 2019

FIBA World Cup Bronze Medal Game | Australia v France Preview

15 September 2019

Prather Shines In United's Big Win, Taipans Smash Bullets

14 September 2019

Starting Five: World Cup Heartbreak

14 September 2019

Spain Again Breaks Boomers Hearts in Double OT

13 September 2019

Watch Live | Illawarra Hawks vs Melbourne United

13 September 2019

FIBA World Cup Semi-Final | Australia v Spain Preview

13 September 2019

Starting Five: Boomers Two Wins from Gold

12 September 2019

Australia Advance to World Cup Final Four

12 September 2019

NBL Partners

Naming Rights
Major Partners
Broadcast & Media Partners
Profile Partners
Suppliers
Associates