Premier Club Basketball Report (22 July 2017)
Lincoln University produced its best game of the season beating a slightly under-strength defending champion Pioneer Pacers 77-66 (missing Elliot Noble and Dan Mulder) in Cowles stadium on Saturday. This was only the second LU defeat of Pioneer since Pioneer joined the Premier competition in 2014, while Lincoln University joined in 2013. In the 2015 Championship Round Lincoln beat Pioneer 89-82, and the closest LU has got since was a 73-76 loss in Hoben trophy final earlier this year.
This win sets up the Lincoln club for another attempt at a unique triple with its Women’s Premier side the defending champion, and has already won the Patron’s trophy this season, while the Lincoln University Bulls remains supreme in the Men’s Under 23, now up to a streak of 65 straight wins over three and a half seasons.
Despite getting into foul trouble, Ben Williams produced an excellent game in limited minutes (20, 7R) while James Cawthorn (18, 12R) played a man of the match performance in the team’s win. Pioneer’s Oli Davies played well but not quite up to full strength and Josiah Williams added a valuable 13 points for LU. Mike Townsend was restricted to 15 points and 10 rebounds while Harley Campbell added 12. Key playmaker and former Ram, Marty Davison was well contained to only nine points for Pioneer.
LU's aggressiveness on offence picked up towards the mid-point of the third quarter, going on a 19-6 run in only four minutes to turn the game around to lead 56-50 at the third break. Jayden Chan stepped up and played some superb defence for LU as they moved to 3-0 (6 pts) in the championship round. Checkers and UC are second on five points each, followed by Atami on four points from three matches.
Atami squandered a big first-quarter lead (31-17) as Checkers came back to beat them in overtime 89-87 after the game was tied 80-80. A record number of fouls (Checkers 25, Atami 36) and free throw shots taken (Checkers 26-47 and Atami 23-34) meant Checkers could have sealed the win without overtime with a better free throw shooting percentage. Nat Connell was a little off form but still managed a solid line of 18P 7R 5A, with Bede Masters (24, 8R) and Wade Parata (18P) just too big and strong once Atami's Dan Pau’u (10) got into foul trouble. Despite that, Derek Albertson recorded 29, Patrick Roger 14 and nine rebonds and Zac Dwan 13 and 10 rebounds for Atami.
Canterbury University beat a struggling Wolverines team 74-60. Josh Peterman (24, 14R) was solid on attack and defence and was supported by Tall Black trialist Tony Tolovae with 16 points and 14 rebounds. For Wolverines, Taylor Britt injured a knee and rolled his ankle, leading Wolverines Coach Jamie Graham to take Britt off just as a precaution with U23's Nationals coming up. Britt spent quite a bit of time on the bench before returning and finish with 22 points and seven rebounds.
Only two Women’s Premier games were played with Halswell beating former long-term champion University 58-33 after only leading 18-17 at half-time. American and Canterbury Wildcat Darcy Rose slotted 16 for Halswell with support from Alice Sproat (12) and Natasha Van Vuuren with 11 points while Lily Nicol scored 12 for UC.
Gators got the better of Wolverines winning 67-45 through the efforts of Megan Ellis (20), Wildcat Sam Duggan (17) and under-age rep Tsubasa Nisbet with 12 points. Letitia Mullaly slotted 20 points for Wolverines.
Lincoln University recorded a 20-0 win over Minties by forfeit, Minties second such loss and now stands to be dropped from the competition if it records a third forfeit.
Four teams, Lincoln University, Pioneer, Gators and North Canterbury all share the lead in the championship round on four points from two games with a deferred game each on hand.
Men’s Premier Championship Round Three
Lincoln University 77 (Ben Williams 20, 7R, James Cawthorn 18, 12R, Josiah Williams 13) Pioneer Pacers 66 (Mike Townsend 15, 10R, Harley Campbell 12). HT: 34-31
Checkers 89 (Bede Marsters 24, 8R, Wade Parata 18, Nat Connell 18, 7R, 5A, Toby Gillooly 12) Atami 87 (Derek Albertson 29, Patrick Roger 14, 9R, Zacc Dwan 13, 10R, Dan Pau’u 10). HT: Atami 49-37
University of Canterbury 74 (Josh Petermann 24, 14R, Tony Tolovae 16, 14R, Ben Anderson 15, Josh Chin 11, 8R) Wolverines 60 (Taylor Britt 22, 7R). HT: 30-23
Points table with games played in parenthesis: Lincoln University 6 (3), UC and Checkers 5 (3), Atami 4 (3), Wolverines 3 (2), Gators and Pioneer 2 (2).
Women’s Premier Championship Round Three:
Halswell 58 (Darcy Rose 16, Alice Sproat 12, Natasha Van Vuuren 11) University of Canterbury 33 (Lily Nicol 12). HT: 18-17
Gators 67 (Megan Ellis 20, Sam Duggan 17, Tsubasa Nisbet 12) Wolverines 45 (Letitia Mullaly 20). HT: 35-21
Lincoln University 20 beat Minties 0 by forfeit
North Canterbury v Pioneer deferred.
Points table with games played in parenthesis: Lincoln University, Pioneer, Gators and North Canterbury 4 (2), Halswell 3 (2), UC 3 (3).