Tall Blacks quartet star in Europe


La Bruixa d’Or Manresa pulled off the upset of the season in the final round of the Spanish League regular season beating perennial powerhouse Real Madrid (27-6), on their own court, 90-80

Perhaps Real relaxed having already wrapped up the regular season title. Perhaps Real were still enjoying the after glow of winning the European title in midweek. Perhaps Real regarded 1st v 17th as a forgone conclusion.

There certainly wasn’t any sign of an upset early on as Manresa trailed by 10 points at the end of the first quarter. However, needing a win to stave off the threat of relegation the visitors stormed home in the second half to record a stunning 90-80 victory. Isaac Fotu played a major role for Manresa scoring 17 points (6/10FG), securing 3 rebounds and dishing 2 assists.

The Manresa victory meant that Tom Abercrombie and his team Gipuzkoa (10-23) had to travel to CAI Zaragoza (17-16) and secure a win to remain ahead of Manresa on the table. Despite 23 points from Tom Abercrombie Gipuzkoa lost 72-65 and slipped into the second relegation spot on the ladder.

Abercrombie has been used sparingly by Gipuzkoa in his short time at the club, but rewarded with a starting spot the Breakers swingman demonstrated his true capability in the last game of the season. He shot 8 from 12 including 3 from 4 triples to lead all Liga Endesa scorers in round 34.

Sevilla secured their place in the top flight for next season with a win at Gipuzkoa in the last round. They made it two wins in as many weeks with a 77-70 home win against FIATC Joventut. Kirk Penney finished his season with a handy 17 points and 6 rebounds.

Bottom 5 Liga Endesa Standings at the conclusion of the regular season.

14th Andorra 12-22

15th Sevilla12-22

16th La Bruixa d’Or Manresa 11-23

17th Gipuzkoa 10-24

18th Fuenlabrada 8-26

Following four straight wins Mega Leks have lost a couple of games in the Serbian Super League after being in a position to win both encounters against the top two teams in the competition.

On Thursday they went down 90-86 to Crvena Zvezda then at the weekend lost 96-95 in overtime to Partizan Belgrade.

Crvena (8-0) are the current champions and League leaders and an upset was on the cards when Mega led 80-72 with 5 minutes remaining. Corey Webster scored a game high 22 points but would have been disappointed his team couldn’t hold on for a win.

The same scenario presented itself against Partizan, Mega this time were ahead by 10 points with 3 minutes to play but again could not close out the game. The scores were locked at 85 apiece after regulation time, Partizan eventually winning 96-95.

Webster was less effective against Partizan scoring 4 points and dishing 3 assists as Mega slipped to 4-5, in fourth place on the ladder.

Tall Fern Samara Gallaher, 10pts/4rebs/4assists helped Hume City Broncos stay top of the Australian Big V competition. The Broncos beat McKinnon 65-53 to improve their record to 10-1.

Gallaher briefly returned to New Zealand the previous weekend to help Oceana Gold Rush Otago secure a top six spot in the WBC ahead of the play-offs.

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