New Plymouth’s Monique Hornby led all scorers with 23 points
Despite a ferocious final-quarter comeback, the NZ Men suffered their first loss of the Australian U16 State Championships at Logan.
Trailing by 17 points after three periods, the young Kiwis closed to within two with two minutes left, but could not close the deal, eventually falling 55-65 to Queensland South.
Harbour guard Tai Webster again led his team with 16 points (7/19 FG, 2/9 FT) and eight rebounds, but they did not help themselves with a 4/16 (25%) return from the free throw line. Their rivals shot 16/30 FT.
New Zealand are now 4-1 and face unbeaten New South Wales Metro in their final pool game on Thursday.
Meanwhile, the NZ Women extended Northern Territory’s winless streak with an easy 76-21 victory, taking the opportunity to rest some of their leading players.
They ran up an 11-point lead in the opening quarter, held NT to just one field goal in a 22-3 second period and never looking back.
New Plymouth’s Monique Hornby led all scorers with 23 points (9/28 FG, 3/15 3pt, 2/2 FT), while Savannah Tafau-Levy of Counties Manukau and Deena Franklin (Harbour) dominated the boards with 17 and 12 rebounds respectively.
The Kiwis (4-1) meet New South Wales Country (3-2) in their final pool game on Thursday.
Australian U16 State Championships
Wednesday, July 7
Queensland South 65 New Zealand 55 (Tai Webster 16, Nico Buckrell 12, Sesilili Palei 10)
HT 30-16 (11-8)
Q3 47-30 (17-14)
FT 65-55 (18-25)
New Zealand 76 (Monique Hornby 23, Keziah Lewis 12, Stella Beck 10, Breana Jones 10) Northern Territory 21
HT 38-8 (22-3)
Q3 52-16 (14-8)
FT 76-21 (24-5)