Huskies howl as Jets run out of fuel

Sal’s NBL basketball is well and truly back in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, with the Sky Tower Auckland Huskies improving to 2-0 after a 106-97 win over the Property Brokers Manawatu Jets. Eventfinda Stadium, home to so many historical moments in New Zealand basketball, was pumping down the stretch as the Huskies, again led by import Jeremy Kendle, stuck with the Jets through 3 quarters before stretching away in the fourth.

The Jets exciting backcourt of Daishon Knight and Jayden Bezzant were having their own way with the Huskies young defence early on in the contest, driving and dishing at will as the Jets led by as many as 10 in the first half. Shane Temara was tough to contain down low and it seemed like the Jets would be too strong for the League’s newest team.

However, a combination of an effective Huskies zone defence and some tiring Jets imports saw the Aucklanders work their back into the game in the third term. Kendle took over in the second half, finishing with 30 points for the second straight game, while 16-year-old Dontae Russo-Nance again impressed with 26.

The Huskies were countering the Jets twos with threes of their own down the stretch, with Sean Murphy gobbling up rebounds and proving plenty of second chance opportunities. The Jets now head to Franklin for the second leg of their Tāmaki Tour, while the Huskies can be very happy with their perfect start to their first full season.


Auckland Huskies (106) defeated Manawatu Jets (97) - BOXSCORE

Huskies: Jeremy Kendle 30pts & 8ast, Dontae Russo-Nance 26pts, Sean Murphy 14pts & 11rbs, Brrok Ruscoe 14pts/

Jets: Daishon Knight 30pts & 6ast, Shane Temara 16pts & 10rbs, Jayden Bezzant 15pts

Game Highlights

  1. The Jets will be a tough team to beat once they’ve had time together. Daishon Knights, despite his 30 points, was blowing on tired legs, and DeAndre Daniel cut a frustrated figure in his first game in over a year. Once they are at full speed, and combining well with Bezzant, McCullough and Temara… look out.
  2. If there’s an early front runner for Youth Player of the Year, look no further than Dontae Russo-Nance. The 16-year-old is unfazed going up against seasoned professionals late in shot clock and it great fun to watch.
  3. Sean Murphy took his demotion from the starting line-up exactly as coach Aaron Young would have wanted him too. The youngster bounced into action, grabbing rebounds and making buckets for his double-double.

Stuff MVP Votes

Jeremy Kendle – 9

Dontae Russo-Nance – 8

Daishon Knight – 5

Sean Murphy – 4

Shane Temara – 2

Jayden Bezzant - 2

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