Monthly Archives: January 2018

More good Kiwi performances in college hoops

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Jacinta Beckley put in a powerful performance as Seattle Redhawks outscored Kansas City 62-58 for a 2-1 record in the Western Athletic Conference. Beckley top scored for Seattle scoring 18 points (7/15FG) whilst also blocking 3 shots and accumulating 6 rebounds.

 Penina Davidson is also in good touch for California Berkeley. Davidson was super efficient with 18 points on 8-10 from the field and came close to a double-double with 9 rebounds as Cal beat Washington 69-60.

That was followed by 5 points and 5 rebounds as Cal swept their weekend fixtures beating Washington State 66-60, the Bears improved to 4-2 in the tough Pac 12 Conference.

Three games into the second half of the season and Tessa Boagni has already reeled off a career high 36 points and a pair of double-doubles for California State University Northridge Matadors.

The Christchurch Girls High School alumni opened the year with a career best 36 points, along with 10 rebounds, against California State Fullerton in the opening Big West Conference game of the season – a 70-68 victory.

Most recently Boagni bagged her fourth double-double of the season – 14 points and 11 rebounds in the 84-71 loss to California Poly.

Sandwiched in between the doubles was a strong 25 points and 7 rebounds effort against Santa Barbara.

 

Katelin Noyer was afforded a little more court time than she has been experiencing of late as Fresno State Bulldogs went down 88-75 to New Mexico. The 2016 Tall Fern responded with a game high 3 blocks, 4 points and a pair of rebounds – the Bulldogs 3-3 in the Mountain West Conference.

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 Izayah Le’afa posted his first career double-double with 14 points, 10 assists, 2 steals and just one turnover as Sacramento State Hornets improved to 2-3 in Big Sky Conference play after beating Montana State 87-68. The former St Pat’s standout is fourth on the Big Sky assists leaders chart averaging 3.8 dimes per game.

For the fifth straight game Jack Salt recorded at least one block, as the high flying Virginia Cavaliers enhanced their national ranking with a 68-51 victory against North Carolina State.

The reliable centre added two points and three rebounds to a single block as Virginia remain unbeaten (5-0) in the Atlantic Coast Conference. The win moves Virginia up to number 2 on the latest AP Top 25 ranking issued this week.

Sam Timmins performs a similar role as Salt for the University of Washington Huskies. The starting centre anchors the defence for the Huskies that are 3-2 in the Pac 12 Conference after going down 73-64 at home to Stanford. He produced numbers close to his season average in the loss – 2 points, 5 rebounds, 2 blocks.

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Three episodes of Kiwi versus Kiwi in American college hoops

 

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L-R Clarke, Blair, Leger-Walker and College of Idaho alumni Jaycin Tini

In the latest news from college hoops three editions of Kiwi versus Kiwi have been played out in the past few days.

In episode one Northern Colorado Bears who gained the upper hand in the second half to win 63-57 spoiled Brooke Blair’s 50th game for the Idaho State Bengals, in which she scored 13 points.

The Bears of course have a couple of Kiwi’s in their lineup – fellow Tall Fern Krystal Leger Walker came up with 4 rebounds and 2 steals whilst former Harbour guard Tiarna Clarke scored 6 points (3/5FG).

24 hours earlier the Bears were beaten for the first time in Big Sky Conference play going down 82-73 to Weber State but they still hold a 5-1 conference record.

Episode two also featured three Kiwis with the Rams from Virginia Commonwealth University taking on the Rams of Fordham University in Atlantic 10 Conference play.

Fordham entered the contest with a 4-0 start in conference play compared with VCU’s 1-3 record. After a tight first half a decisive 19-10 third period carried Fordham to a hard fought 64-54 road win.

For the thirteenth time in seventeen games Tera Reed was in double figures – a perfect 8 from 8 from the foul line – as she produced 12 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assists for VCU.

Zara Jillings, fresh from a career high 8 assists in the previous game, contributed 5 points, 3 rebounds and 2 assists for Fordham. Former Waikato forward Kendell Heremaia, who played alongside Jillings and Reed in the 2016 Junior Tall Ferns, came up with a game high 3 steals plus 6 points and 4 rebounds for Fordham.

There could have been a fourth Kiwi on show but Fordham’s Cantabrian forward Mary Goulding is recovering from a hand injury although expected back on court in the next couple of weeks.

In the third episode Stella Beck and St Mary’s Gaels got the better of Dru Toleafoa and Santa Clara winning 59-46 in West Coast Conference play. 2014 Tall Fern Toleafoa was one of the better performers for Santa Clara with 12 points and 4 rebounds. Beck, capped by the Tall Ferns a year earlier chipped in with 4 points and 4 rebounds.

Beck was more prominent a couple of days later scoring 12 points and adding 5 rebounds and 3 assists in a 75-62 victory against Pepperdine – St Mary’s now 5-1 in conference action.

Jacinta Beckley put in a powerful performance as Seattle Redhawks outscored Kansas City 62-58 for a 2-1 record in the Western Athletic Conference. Beckley top scored for Seattle scoring 18 points (7/15FG) whilst also blocking 3 shots and accumulating 6 rebounds.

Clarke and Jillings get the better of Blair and Reed in College action

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Former Harbour players went head to head in a couple of college games over the weekend. Tiarna Clarke and Zara Jillings prevailed but only just.

Read about these games and others featuring former Harbour rep players more

Boagni in prime form at CSUN

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I’m not sure what Tessa Boagni conjured up as New Year resolutions but breaking basketball personal bests may have been one of them. Three games into the second half of the season and Boagni has already reeled off a career high 36 points and a pair of double-doubles for California State University Northridge Matadors.

The Christchurch Girls High School alumni opened the year with a career best 36 points, along with 10 rebounds, against California State Fullerton in the opening Big West Conference game of the season – a 70-68 victory.

Most recently Boagni bagged her fourth double-double of the season – 14 points and 11 rebounds in the 84-71 loss to California Poly.

Sandwiched in between the doubles was a strong 25 points and 7 rebounds effort against Santa Barbara.

In her senior year at CSUN Boagni is averaging 13.6 points and 6.9 rebounds across the 17 games played this season.

However her form in 2018 surpasses that as she has collected her 75 points at 25 points per outing and 28 rebounds at 9.3 boards across the three games played in January.

Boagni hasn’t played international basketball for a couple of years but an extended spell with this type of form will have the Cantabrian at the forefront of the Tall Ferns selectors minds.

Micaela Cocks and Kalani Purcell heading for WNBL showdown

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Tall Ferns teammates Micaela Cocks and Kalani Purcell will go head to head on Saturday night as Townsville Fire entertain Melbourne Boomers in game 1 of the Australian WNBL Grand Final Series.

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Boagni and Blair headline this week’s review of college hoops

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In the latest news from college hoops the performance of the week belongs to Cantabrian Tessa Boagni and the stat of the week to Brooke Blair.

Boagni posted a career high 36 points as California State Northridge Matadors edged Cal State Fullerton 70-68 in their Big West Conference opener. She completed her ninth career double-double with 10 rebounds in a performance labeled by Matadors head coach Jason Flowers as “Big time – the numbers speak for themselves.”

Those numbers included 11 from 21 shooting from the field and 14 made free throws from 16 attempts.

Blair had back-to-back 14 points outings for Idaho State Bengals. The Bengals are 2-1 in Big Sky Conference play after a 76-70 defeat at the hands of Southern Utah and a bounce back 75-55 win at Northern Arizona.

Blair’s 5 from 9 shooting from beyond the arc across the two games has propelled her to the top of the NCAA Division 1 three-point shooting percentage chart.

This season the former Rangitoto College guard has made 34 from 67 attempts (50.7%).

Put into context, with 349 Women’s NCAA Division 1 basketball programmes, Blair is ahead of over 3,500 players on the shooting chart she heads. Blair has connected with at least one triple in every game and is leading the Bengals scoring in this campaign averaging 14 points per outing.

Stella Beck was also in good form scoring a season high 24 points as St Mary’s Gaels beat San Diego 75-53 to improve to 3-1 in West Coast Conference play. The former Hutt Valley guard had a shooting night to remember missing just once from 11 attempts.

Penina Davidson made 7 points and garnered 9 rebounds as Cal Berkeley Golden Bears improved to 2-2 in the highly competitive Pac 12 Conference – the Bears won at Arizona but only just (53-51).

Zara Jillings has enjoyed plenty of court time for Fordham University recently as the Rams have begun Atlantic 10 Conference play with three wins on the bounce, the latest victory a narrow 66-63 win against St Louis. Jillings has started all three conference games averaging 32 minutes, 7.7 points, 4 rebounds and three assists. Her shooting has also been impressive in the three game swing connecting with 10 of 16 shots at 63%.

Also in the Atlantic 10 Virginia Commonwealth Rams slipped to 0-3 after going down to Duquesne 70-51. On a positive note Tera Reed was the only Rams player in double figures scoring 13 points to add to 4 rebounds.

It was almost all the five’s for Krystal Leger-Walker as Northern Colorado Bears clawed Montana 68-50 for a fourth straight Big Sky Conference victory. Leger-Walker had four assists and a quintet of points, rebounds and steals.

14,400 spectators were on hand to see Jack Salt and University of Virginia Cavaliers take down the defending NCAA champions, North Carolina 61-49. Salt (4pts/3rebs/1block) was at the heart of the Cavs defensive effort described by NCU head coach Roy Williams as, “About as good a defensive game as we’ve had anybody play against us.”

Bad week in Europe for Kiwis

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It was a bad weekend for our four Kiwi national representatives playing in major leagues in Europe – all four suffered defeats.

In Germany Tai Webster and Frankfurt Skyliners suffered a home loss to Telekom Bonn beaten 81-76 to slip to 10-7 for the season. Webster enjoyed a good personal showing with 15 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals.

Ratiopharm Ulm are a win behind Frankfurt after a narrow 80-77 loss at Brose. Isaac Fotu, with 14 points (5/7FG), was one of four Ulm players in double figures.

In Israel Corey Webster scored 8 points and dished 5 assists but Ironi Nahariya were defeated 98-90 at Hapoel Holon. Nahariya slip to a 5-6 record sitting seventh on the Israeli League ladder.

Napoli went down 76-70 at home to Ragusa in the Italian League falling to sixth on the ladder with a 7-6 record. Jillian Harmon scored a fair chunk of the Napoli points – 28 to be exact, two shy of her season best. Harmon leads the Italian League scoring averaging 19.1 points per game and is fourth on the rebounding list with 9.4 boards per outing illustrating the outstanding season the Tall Ferns forward is having.

Brooke Blair leading NCAA Division 1 three-point shooting percentage chart

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In probably a first for New Zealand basketball, Idaho State Bengals guard Brooke Blair currently tops the NCAA Division 1 three-point shooting percentage chart.

Put into context, with 349 Women’s NCAA Division 1 basketball programmes, Blair is ahead of over 3,500 players on the shooting chart she heads.

Blair has connected with at least one triple in every game this season for the Bengals who are 2-1 in the Big Sky Conference and 9-5 overall.

This season the former Rangitoto College guard has made 34 from 67 attempts (50.7%) with six makes from nine attempts, against Washington back in November, her most productive outing.

The 2016 Tall Fern is leading the Bengals scoring in this campaign averaging 14 points per game.

Interestingly, next Saturday Idaho State take on Northern Colorado Bears. The Bears are unbeaten in Big Sky action and have a couple of players familiar to Blair – fellow Kiwis Krystal Leger-Walker and Tiarna Clarke. Leger-Walker and Clarke could be charged with keeping Blair quiet, the outcome will be interesting

Women’s NCAA Division 1 Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage

1 Brooke Blair, Idaho St. (Big Sky) 50.7
2 Kia Nurse, UConn (AAC) 50.0
– Sophie Cunningham, Missouri (SEC) 50.0
4 Honoka Ikematsu, Robert Morris (NEC) 49.2
5 Pika Rodriguez, Pittsburgh (ACC) 48.0

Some nice performances from Harbour players in the States last week

Katie Diakhaby

Plenty to report with regard to Harbour players in college last week including a monster double-double from former Orewa College standout Katie Diakhaby

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Mate v Mate, Tall Fern v Tall Fern

 

Micaela cocks

Micaela Cocks and Kalani Purcell have stood side by side in New Zealand colours on the international stage on many occasions. However next weekend they will be on opposite sides of the court competing for the biggest prize in Australasian basketball.

Cocks plays for Townsville Fire and Purcell for Melbourne Boomers – the two teams will go head to head in the Australian Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) Grand Final Series beginning next Saturday.

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