NZ Breakers down Gold Coast 90-79 in NBL - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

NZ Breakers down Gold Coast 90-79 in NBL

By Daniel Pace 11/11/2007 09:17:37 PM Comments (0)

A tired Gold Coast outfit ended a horror weekend with a 90-79 loss to the New Zealand Breakers in the NBL clash on the tourist strip.

The Blaze looked a little jaded after West Sydney had snapped their four-match winning streak at Acer Arena and they were sluggish in the opening quarter against the Breakers.

Even with Californian import forward Juaquin Hawkins returning from a groin injury, the Blaze missed too many baskets and were unable to reel in their opponents, who led at every break at the Gold Coast Convention Centre.

Kirk Penney (22 points) and Ricky Rickert (19 points) caused most of the damage against the Blaze, whose top-scorer was robust Kiwi Pero Cameron (17 points).

Coming off a thrilling 98-92 overtime victory over Singapore on Thursday night, the Breakers entrenched their top eight spot and improved their win-loss record to 6-5 while the Gold Coast slipped to 5-6.

The Breakers raced to an early 30-17 lead with Penney and Rickert punishing any turnovers from the Blaze, who shot a shocking 27 per cent in the first quarter.

Perhaps fearing another roasting from fiery coach Brendan Joyce, Gold Coast lifted their game after the break and applied some heat of their own.

The Breakers regained the ascendancy through a four-point play from Tony Ronaldson, who was fouled by Ben Melmeth, to open up a commanding 17-point buffer.

But the Blaze clawed their way back through crucial three-pointers to James Harvey, Cameron and Scott McGregor to score 29 points in the quarter - four more than the Breakers - and trailed 55-46 at halftime.

It took the Gold Coast four minutes into the third quarter to drop their first basket as the Breakers led 60-48 and the match was slipping away.

In a day to forget for the Blaze on Remembrance Day, the Breakers turned the screws in the final quarter to post a deserved 11-point victory.

The only concern for the Auckland-based team was an ankle injury to Wayne Turner.

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