Monthly Archives: December 2018

Webster exits EuroCup but Fotu fights on

 

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Tai Webster scored 18 points (6/13FG, 6/7FT) for his Turkish club Galatasaray on Wednesday night but it wasn’t enough to stave off elimination from the EuroCup.

Galatasaray needed a win at Group A leaders AS Monaco but fell 76-71 and with a 3-6 record are eliminated from the EuroCup with one round of games still to play.

Still alive are Isaac Fotu and his German club Ratiopharm Ulm. With a 4-5 record Ulm travel to Italy next week to meet Brescia – the winners of the tie will grab the one remaining place available from Group A to progress to the last sixteen.

In Tuesday night’s game Ulm defeated Morabanc Andorra 88-80 to keep their hopes of progressing from group-play alive. Ulm coach Thorston Leibenath used his players sparingly with nine players logging between 14 minutes and 21 minutes. Fotu played just 14 minutes checking out with 2 points, 2 rebounds an assist and a steal.

In German League action Ulm, after a poor start losing five of their first six games, have won three games on the bounce and are up to ninth on the Bundesliga ladder with a 4-5 record.

In the Turkish League Galatasaray are sixth on the table with a 5-4 record after an 86-76 win against Banvit BK last weekend.

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Jack Salt and Virginia a perfect nine from nine

Jack Salt

Jack Salt and Virginia University Cavaliers are a perfect nine from nine after defeating Virginia Commonwealth 57-49 on Sunday. Jack only had a single points but did pull down 7 boards. Depending on which poll you view Virginia are currently ranked between #3 and #6 nationally.

Vanderbilt University Commodores enjoyed a comfortable 79-51 win against Middle Tennessee to improve to 6-2 for the season. Yanni Wetzel benefitted from 17 minutes court time making 5 points, 3 rebounds, a pair of steals, an assist and a block.

Eight points (4/6FG) and 4 rebounds from Callum McRae helped University of California Riverside Highlanders break a three game losing slide. The Highlanders squeezed past Pepperdine to improve to 3-7 for the season and will enjoy a ten day break before their next outing.

Yuat Alok scored 7 points as Texas Christian University thumped University of California 96-61 at the Staples Centre in the Basketball Hall of Fame Classic. TCU boast a 7-1 start to the season.

St Mary’s Gaels had little trouble seeing off New Mexico winning 85-60 with Quinn Clinton making one of two threes and Dan Fotu dishing 3 assists to accompany a quartet of points and boards. The Gaels (7-4) followed that with a fourth straight win defeating California State Fullerton 81-66. Fotu claimed a game high equalling 3 offensive boards, snaring six rebounds in total, along with 5 points.

Izayah Le’afa added 3 steals to 9 points but the sophomore guard didn’t have the best of shooting nights as Sacramento State Hornets fell 76-67 at Portland. Le’afa made just 3 from 12 from the field but the Hornets still boast a 4-2 record this season.

Sam Timmins came up with 4 points, 3 rebounds and a block to help Washington Huskies get the win, 70-62, at Seattle on Sunday. Washington now 7-3 for the season.

Career night for Michelle Nicholls the highlight of Kiwi women’s performances in the States

Michelle Nicholls

Career high for Michelle Nicholls

Michelle Nicholls and Akiene-Tera Reed were teammates at Life Centre Academy, New Jersey during their final two years of high school. Both secured NCAA Division 1 scholarships following their time at LCA with Reed grabbing most the headlines for her scoring feats at Virginia Commonwealth University over the last season and a half. However, it was Nicholls turn to shine at the weekend as her all-round performance carried La Salle University Explorers to their first win of the season.

Nicholls had to bide her time last year getting little opportunity during her freshman season. However playing time has increased this season and the additional playing experience helped her put together an outstanding stats line to help La Salle claim that first win after eight straight losses. Nicholls scored a career high 17 points to accompany 4 assists, 3 rebounds and 3 steals in 30 minutes of action as the Explorers beat Norfolk State 76-65.

Reed produced an efficient shooting display (5/8FG, 6/6FT) but her 16 points were not enough to get VCU Rams across the line at Cincinnati going down 66-54 – the Rams still boast a 6-4 record ahead of a week off.

In other news from NCAA Division 1 hoops 13 points (3/5 3PG) from guard Kayla Manirirangi helped Tulane University Green Wave make it seven wins from the first eight games with a 71-46 win over Nicholls University.

The win was a remarkable 500thfor Tulane Head Coach Lisa Stockton in her 25thseason leading Tulane.

Mary Goulding threatened a double-double in the Fordham University Rams 65-52 loss at Pittsburgh. In addition to 8 points Goulding secured 9 rebounds (4 at the offensive end) and distributed a game high 5 assists. Kendell Heremaia chipped in with 9 points– the Rams now 5-5 for the season.

Amiee Book set new college highs in steals and rebounds as Cal State Fullerton Titans came away from a trip across country to New York with a 61-58 victory over Columbia. Book snared a game high 5 steals, to go with 7 boards and 7 points.

aimee book

Amiee Book

Tegan Graham scored 6 points as Colgate University Raiders stole a 61-52 road win against University of Massachusetts Lowell to improve to 4-4 for the season. The Wellingtonian hit 2 from 5 threes.

Also scoring half a dozen but in a losing cause was Shalae Salmon as BYU were defeated 78-67 by Utah.

Rotorua native Matangiroa Flavell scored a season best 4 points for Houston Baptist but the Huskies fell 100-75 at North Texas.

Penina Davidson spoils Micaela Cocks’ special night

Micaela Cocks

Micaela Cocks

Tall Fern Micaela Cocks has been appointed captain, at least in the short term, of Townsville Fire, three-tim Australian Women’s Basketball League champions.

The  long-time Tall Ferns guard captained the club in the absence of Suzy Batkovic in Friday night’s encounter with Adelaide Lightning.

Since joining the club in 2011/12, the Kiwi Olympian has represented the Fire on 193 occasions – second behind Rachael McCully (228) on the club’s all-time games’ list – and has played a key role in their championship successes.

Despite scoring a team high 17 points Cocks first outing as captain ended in disappointment as Townsville were defeated 85-70 on their home court by Adelaide. Stella Beck, in her first season out of St Mary’s College scored 4 points for the Fire but it was another New Zealand rookie-pro, Penina Davidson, that inflicted major damage on Cocks and her colleagues.

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Penina Davidson

The former Cal Berkeley stand-out came up big for Adelaide posting 14 points (6/11FG), her best return of the season to date, and snared 5 rebounds.

Cocks added two assists and a pair of steals but it wasn’t enough for the Fire that slip to a 5-7 record. Just over half-way through the season the Fire are in need of some winning momentum but it doesn’t get any easier for them as next up they face Toni Farnworth and the table topping Perth Lynx (9-2).

Adelaide, after a fourth straight win, sit fourth on the WNBL ladder with a 7-6 record.

Freeman and Waardenburg latest college players to produce strong performances

Sam Waardenburg

Sam Waardenburg

Matt Freeman and Sam Waardenburg are the latest of the New Zealand men playing NCAA Division 1 hoops to make an impact.

On Wednesday University of Miami swingman Sam Waardenburg enjoyed a career night despite the Hurricanes going down 89-75 against Penn at the Palestra. Waardenburg, in his second season with the Hurricanes, scored 14 points on 5 from 7 shooting that included 2 from 3 from beyond the arc. In addition to career best points it was significant he also played a career high 37 minutes.

Matt Freeman enjoyed a successful night as Oklahoma University Sooners beat Notre Dame Fighting Irish 85-80.

Freeman chose the historic Madison Square Garden to contribute 11 points (3/6 3PG), 4 rebounds and 2 blocks as his perimeter shooting and strong interior defence helped the Sooners to the win in the first ever meeting between the two famous basketball institutions.

Matt Freemanpg

Matt Freeman

 

Earlier in the week Dan Fotu and Jack Salt produced standout performances.

Fotu is earning more and more minutes in his freshman season at St Mary’s, California. Fotu rewarded coach Randy Bennett for displaying confidence in him by putting together a perfect shooting display as the Gaels stunned California Golden Bears winning 84-71. Fotu’s numbers were impressive knocking down 4 from 4 threes, his only two-pointer and both of his free throws.

Jack Salt scored a career high 12 points on 6 from 7 shooting and added a team high 7 rebounds as No 4 Virginia Cavaliers beat No 24 Maryland 76-71.

Salt followed that up with 6 points and 4 rebounds as Virginia swept Morgan State 83-45. Virginia now 8-0 for the season.

Sacramento States Hornets (3-1) dropped its first game of the season going down 75-58 at UC Santa Barbara. Former Tall Blacks point guard Izayah Le’afa was one of three Hornets in double figures finishing with 11 points (3/7 3PG), 5 rebounds and 3 assists. He followed that with 9 points and 3 steals in the 88-68 win at Cal State Northridge.

Freshman Tobias Cameron secured 3 rebounds to accompany 5 points (2/2FG) as Abilene Christian won their seventh straight game, inflicting pain on Howard Payne University with a 90-53 win.

Another freshman Callum McRae produced 8 points in 15 minutes for Cal Riverside but the Highlanders were toppled 82-73 by Valparaiso.

Leger-Walker, Salmon, King, Book and Manuirirangi all in double figures in Div 1 college games

 

Tylah King

Tylah King came close to a career best.

Tylah King was within a point of equalling her career high when she scored 14 points as University of Pacific beat San Jose State 91-67. The senior guard added 6 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals for good measure.

Floor general Krystal Leger-Walker set up an exciting win for Northern Colorado Bears against  Southern Methodist, 58-57. She garnered a steal and then provided the pass for teammate Ali Meyer to make the winning layup in the closing 20 seconds of the game. Leger-Walker was impressive throughout finishing with 10 points, 9 assists, 6 rebounds, 4 steals and a block.

Tirana Clarke & leger-walker

Krystal Leger-Walker

Shalae Salmon scored in double figures (10 points) but BYU Cougars were pipped 67-64 by Southern Utah despite being up by two points with 37 seconds to play. Salmon added 5 rebounds as BYU slipped to just its second defeat of the season.

The Cougers (6-2) bounced back 48 hours later defeating Utah Valley 77-51 with Salmon adding 7 points to a game high 10 rebounds.

Zara Jillings, making her first start of the season, posted an all-round 8 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists and a steal playing the whole 40 minutes but Fordham University were well beaten by Georgetown 58-38.

Fordham got back to winning ways a couple of days later winning the Battle of the Bronx against Manhattan 65-61. Kendall Heremaia was everywhere with 7 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists and a steal. Jillings had 6 points and Mary Goulding, who missed the game against Georgetown, scored 9 points (plus 5 rebounds) as the Rams improved to 5-4.

Amiee Book threw down a pair of blocks to go with 8 points (3/6FG) as California State Fullerton Titans beat Ivy League school Dartmouth College 67-62. Three days later Book had 10 points (3/5FG) as the Titans improved to 4-4 for the season with a 64-56 home win against CSU Bakersfield.

Tulane Greenwave proved far too good for Florida Atlantic winning 88-45. Kayla Manuirirangi scored 12 points (2/4 3PG, 6/6FT) and dished 5 assists – Tulane now off to a 6-1 start to the season.

Joellen How scored six points but Wagner College dropped their fifth straight game going down 69-57 to St Peter’s.

Akiene-Tera Reed fouled out in 24 minutes as Virginia Commonwealth came from behind to edge Georgetown Hoyas 47-45 in a defence orientated game. Reed had 7 points and an assist in that time.

NZ U15 Boys thump Guam

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New Zealand U15 Boys made a good start at the FIBA Oceania U15 Champs in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea on Tuesday beating Guam 131-41.

All twelve Kiwis got on the scoresheet with Head Coach Morgan Maskell able to give all his players decent court time – no player on court for more than twenty-five minutes.

New Zealand led 26-10 at quarter time and steadily built their advantage thereafter.

Cantabrian Hunter Adam led the New Zealand scoring with 23 points – seven players posting double figures.

New Zealand play hosts PNG on Wednesday.

NZ 131 – H Adam 23, Z Riley 15, S Tawera 15, R Trego 13, J Thompson 12, L Kerr 11, T Gapare 10, J De Young 9, B Gold 8, J Book 6, E Skelton 5, A McBirney-Griffin 4

 

The Fotu’s are firing

Isaac Fotu copy

The Fotu brothers have been in great form of late.

Prior to the FIBA international break Isaac Fotu had enjoyed a couple of standout games for his German club Ratiopharm Ulm.

Isaac scored 15 points on 6 from 9 shooting as Ulm lost a tight encounter with Monaco going down 84-81 in EuroCup action. Ulm (3-5) will have to win both of their two remaining pool games to advance to the next round starting with a home game against Andorra next Tuesday.

The Tall Blacks power forward followed that with a high octane 18 points (8/12FG, 2/2FT), 6 rebounds, 2 assists and 3 steals as Ulm gained a much-needed win in the Bundesliga against Telekom Basket. The win, just the third in the German League for Ulm this season, improved their record to 3-5.

Isaac’s efficient scoring efforts were more than matched by younger brother Dan at the weekend.

The 19 year-old is earning more and more minutes in his freshman season at St Mary’s College California. Dan rewarded coach Randy Bennett for displaying confidence in him by putting together a perfect shooting display as the Gaels stunned California Golden Bears winning 84-71. Fotu’s numbers were highly impressive knocking down 4 from 4 threes, his only two-pointer and both of his free throws – seven shots with zero misses in 21 minutes on court.

Dan Fotu

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