Guards Kirk Penney and Tai Webster put together the stand out performances by our Tall Blacks based abroad this week.
Last Thursday Kirk Penney fuelled the Illawarra Hawks with 20 points (8/18FG) as it went down 97-96 to Melbourne United in the latest round of the Australian NBL.
In one of the most exciting games of the season the Hawks trailed by 10 points at three-quarter time but clawed its way back into the contest to lead in the dying seconds before Chris Goulding made the go ahead free throw for United with just 4.6 seconds left on the clock.
Illawarra got back in the winners circle on Saturday with Penney once again playing a starring role. The shooting guard amassed 29 points as the Hawks bounced the lowly Sydney Kings 114-90. Penney shot an impressive 6 of 9 from beyond the three-point arc to help move the Hawks to third on the NBL ladder with a 12-8 record.
Dion Prewster had a quiet game for Sydney scoring just two points with his only shot of the game.
Earlier, the first game of the round on Wednesday saw Cairns Taipans keep its play off hopes alive with a 71-61 home win over Perth Wildcats. Jarrod Kenny had 2pts/4rebs/1assist for the Cats.
Despite a career-high 22 points from Tai Webster, Nebraska University Huskers fell at No. 19 ranked Iowa, 77-66, on Tuesday night in American College basketball.
Webster hit 7-of-11 shots from the floor in posting his third 20-point of the season.
Nebraska coach Tim Miles on Webster’s performance, “Tai is doing better and better, he came in with a lot of expectations and that was difficult for him physically and emotionally and he has been a lot better for us this year.”
Webster was less efficient on Saturday but Nebraska broke into the win column for the first time in Big Ten Conference play with a 90-56 win against Rutgers. The Huskers are now 1-3 in conference play.
Webster had 6pts/5rebs/2assists but shot just 3 from 10 from the field.
Freshman Jack Salt contributed 2 rebounds and a block during 8 minutes of court time, as No 4 ranked Virginia Cavaliers was defeated at Georgia Tech, 68-64 on Saturday.
The loss was the second in a row for Virginia that slipped to a 1-2 record in Atlantic Coast Conference games.
In Europe CAI Zaragoza lost its 10th game of the Liga Endesa campaign suffering a tight 71-69 loss to Bilbao (7-8) on Sunday in Spain. The loss ended the two-game winning streak of CAI Zaragoza and leaves it with a 5-10 record. Isaac Fotu scored 6 points and added 3 rebounds in 21 minutes
Zaragoza drops to the fourteenth position on the ladder and next week will play against the league’s leader Valencia Basket that boast a rather daunting 15-0 record.
A freezing polar blast hit the UK at the weekend but the Plymouth Raiders warmed their fans with what coach Corletto described an “ugly win”, 76-72, at home against Leeds Force.
Duane Bailey came off the bench to contribute 8 points, 7 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal as the Raiders improve to 6-11 and a spot in the top eight of the twelve team competition.
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Remembering Plymouth began the season with six straight losses a move into play off contention is a massive achievement.