The New Zealand Men completely dominated South Australia Country in the 4th/5th place decider on the final day of the Australian State Championships in Melbourne on Saturday, winning 84-45.
Winning every quarter the Kiwis dominated in every facet of the game. The South Australians were out rebounded 48-24, steals went 16-5 against them and the assists count was 21-10 in favour of New Zealand.
The Kiwis were 18-5 ahead at quarter time courtesy of 8 straight points from guard Tom Cowie that included a couple of threes.
Shalom Broughton took the lead into double figures early in the second and New Zealand met little resistance thereafter.
Cowie (4/6 3PG) made another couple of threes and Marvin Williams-Dunn netted 4 points in the second as the advantage was expanded to 35-16 at half-time.
The Kiwis enjoyed a free scoring second half nailing 49 points in a very comfortable win.
Cowie led all scorers with 24 points, his second 20 plus points haul of the week. Mitchell Dance with 16 points (4/93PG) and Shalom Broughton (12points) also nabbed double figures as all ten Kiwis found the net.
Joseph Hylton (11) and Taranaki’s Morgan Trott (10) led the New Zealand rebounding effort.
New Zealand coach Dave Mackay was pleased with the performance.
“It was a great finish for us with everyone contributing.”
A fifth place finish was satisfactory but safe to say the coaching staff had loftier goals.
“We had a sound tournament but 20 bad minutes across eight games ultimately cost us,” said Mackay, referring to the quarter-final loss to Victoria Country.
NZ Scorers: Tom Cowie 24/5 assists, Mitchell Dance 16, Shalom Broughton 12/7, Kainoa Lepou 8, Joseph Hylton 7/11, Logan McIntosh 5, Morgan Trott 4/10/4steals, Marvin Williams-Dunn 4, Ezrah Vaigafa 2, Jared Thornton 2/6