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Tuatara blowout Jets; Hawks top Nuggets

The Auckland Tuatara and Bay Hawks have scored home wins in Saturday night National Basketball League (NBL) action.

The Tuatara became the first team to reach eight wins, dominating the overmatched Manawatu Jets 110-72 at Eventfinda Stadium, while the Hawks finished strong to defeat the Otago Nuggets 116-105 in Napier.


Former Tall Blacks guard Corey Webster shone for the Tuatara, finishing with 29 points (11/15 FG, 4/7 3pt, 3/3 FT), five rebounds, 13 assists and three steals, backed up by Rob Loe, with 22 points (9/13 FG, 4/5 FT), seven boards and three assists.

Tall Blacks veteran Reuben Te Rangi contributed 16 points (6/9 FG, 2/4 3pt), five assists and two steals, while young forward Charlie Dalton had 16 points (5/7 FG, 2/3 3pt, 4/4 FT) and three steals off the bench. Tom Vodanovich also provided 14 points (6/13 FG, 2/6 3pt), seven rebounds and two steals.

Mustapha Heron carried the Jets offence with a game-high 31 points (12/18 FG, 5/6 3pt) and three steals, with the only substantial support coming from Simon Lafaele with 12 points (5/8 FG, 2/3 3pt), eight boards and two steals.

The Tuatara never trailed, scoring the game's first 12 points and leading by as many as 13 in the opening quarter. Manawatu scored 10 straight points to pull within four early in the second period but the Tuatara stretched out by 18 by halftime.

The Jets, who committed 23 turnovers and allowed 60 points in the paint, only got as close as 14 points in the second half, with the Tuatara's bench outscoring them 27-12 in the fourth quarter.

In Week 8, the Tuatara (8-2) head to Dunedin to face the Nuggets (4-5) on Thursday (tip-off 7.30pm), while the Jets (1-8) head to New Plymouth to battle the Taranaki Airs (5-3) on Saturday (tip-off 7.30pm).

In a game of wild runs, the Hawks ended the stronger to send the Nuggets home from their North Island double-header winless.

American guard Isaiah Moore scored a game-high 30 points (12/23 FG, 2/6 3pt, 4/7 FT), with four rebounds, eight assists and two steals, while Australian guard Keanu Rasmussen had 27 points (8/10 FG, 5/7 3pt, 6/6 FT) and two steals.

Tall Blacks forward Jordan Ngatai finished with 20 points (8/17 FG, 4/4 FT), four boards and two blocks, Luke Sutherland 20 points (8/14 FG, 4/7 3pt) and three blocks and Josh Roberts 13 points (6/8 FG), and a monster 20 rebounds.

Ex Tall Blacks guard Tai Webster led the Nuggets with 27 points (11/15 FG, 2/2 3pt), eight assists and two steals, Kimani Lawrence 22 points (10/16 FG), five boards and three assists, Ben Henshall 20 points (8/21 FG, 4/9 3pt), five rebounds and five assists, and Zach Darko-Kelly 13 points (5/11 FG, 3/7 3pt), six boards and two blocks.

Isaiah Moore Bay Hawks NBL basketball
American guard Isaiah Moore scored a game-high 30 points for the Bay Hawks. PHOTO: NBL

The Nuggets dominated the first quarter, leading by as many as 14 points, before the Hawks responded with a 29-8 run, including three triples from Rasmussen to take a 49-42 lead midway through the second quarter.

After some back-and-forth, Otago scored 14 straight points in the middle stages of the third period to retake a seven-point lead.

However, from five points down with 6:37 remaining, the Hawks outscored the Nuggets 22-6 down the stretch, with threes from Rasmussen and Sutherland and back-to-back three-point plays from Ngatai.

The Hawks (4-4) host the Franklin Bulls (6-2) to open Week 8 on Wednesday (tip-off 7.30pm), while the Nuggets, losers of five of their last six games, get no respite against the Tuatara at the Edgar Centre next week.

Auckland Tuatara 110 (Corey Webster 29, Rob Loe 22, Reuben Te Rangi 16, Charlie Dalton 16, Tom Vodanovich 14) Manawatu Jets 72 (Mustapha Heron 31, Simon Lafaele 12). 1Q: 25-17, HT: 59-41, 3Q: 83-60

Bay Hawks 116 (Isaiah Moore 30, Keanu Rasmussen 27, Jordan Ngatai 20, Luke Sutherland 20, Josh Roberts 13) Otago Nuggets 105 (Tai Webster 27, Kimani Lawrence 22, Ben Henshall 20, Zack Darko-Kelly 13). 1Q: 23-34, HT: 59-54, 3Q: 88-88


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