NZNBL News - Posted on Sunday, July 14th, 2019
SAINTS TOPPLE RANGERS TO FINISH UNDEFEATED IN THE REGULAR SEASON
The Cigna Wellington Saints are now two games away from recording only the second perfect NZNBL season, after gliding past an inexperienced 2Cheap Cars Supercity Rangers team 113-67.
It was always going to a tall task for the Rangers to catch the Saints napping and to their dismay the visitors turned up ready to dominate.
Both teams showed an ability to score the ball in the opening stages, but the Saints slowly but surely showed their experience and went on a 17-2 run to finish the first quarter up 35-11.
Things went from bad to worse for the Rangers in the following quarter, as they showed no signs of keeping up with the machine that is the undefeated Saints.
Rob Loe, Jordan Ngatai and Nick Kay all finished the half in double-digits for points, while four other teammates had at least two made baskets to their name. The Saints only shot three triples in the first half, but still managed to extend their lead to 39 at the main interval.
The third was the best of the four quarters for the Rangers, scoring a game-high 21 points. However, made baskets on one end didn't make up for leaky defence and the Saints continued to punish the youngsters for being a second too slow.
Fifty points was the buffer at one stage for the visitors, but the quarter ended with the Saints up 90-42. Loe at that stage had already accumulated 20 points and set himself up for Sal's Man of the Match honours.
The Saints rolled out their second-stringers in the final 10 and the Rangers managed to outscore the visitors 25-23 to finish on a positive among 30 odd minutes worth of negatives.
Wellington Saints 113 defeated Supercity Rangers 67
Saints - 21pts & 7rbs, Jordan Ngatai 17pts & 4rbs, Tom Abercrombie 15pts & 7rbs.
Rangers - Sam Aruwa 13pts, Reuben Fitzgerald 11pts.
Stats That Matter - The Saints won the ball game by 46 points, despite only shooting nine triples. As well as this, the visitors only shot 16 free throws, meaning over 60% of their points came from within 22 feet. A staggering percentage considering the difference in final scores.
TAB MVP Votes - Rob Loe (Saints) 10, Tom Abercrombie (Saints) 8, Nick Kay (Saints) 6, Reuben Fitzgerald (Rangers) 3, Samuel Aruwa (Rangers) 3.