Saints hot on tail of Taranaki in playoff race

GLENN MCLEAN
Last updated 05:00 07/05/2012

Relevant offers

Basketball

Nelson Giants secure first home NBL win of season with victory over Taranaki 42 of the best from John Wall set up Washington Wizards series against Boston Celtics Life is about to get real for Steven Adams as he enters mega-deal with OKC Thunder Understrength Southland Sharks too slick for Taranaki Mountain Airs Nelson Giants desperate for home court NBL win over Taranaki Mountainairs A balancing act for Netball South shooter Aliyah Dunn as she juggles basketball, netball and studies Canterbury Rams sign McKenzie Moore and Mike Karena for rest of NBL season Line drawn in the sand as Southland Sharks become accountable Steven Adams comes clean on why Russell Westbrook is 'legit dude' and great team-mate Washington cut from Giants but still expected to front at Trafalgar Centre

The Taranaki Mountain Airs have the Wellington Saints on their tail as the National Basketball League playoffs draw nearer.

The Saints moved to within two points of the fourth-placed Mountain Airs after they upset the second-placed Bay Hawks 88-73 on Saturday night.

With two games in hand over the Mountain Airs, the Saints loom as a threat for the Taranaki side who are out to break a 17-year absence from the playoffs.

The Good Home Mountain Airs' cause was not helped by Friday night's result when they were soundly beaten 102-85 by the Manawatu Jets in New Plymouth.

Coach David Bublitz took some small comfort out of the fact his squad suffered no injuries from the game.

"Everyone's pride was a bit dented because we felt we let the people who came out to support us down," he said.

"We know we didn't play as well as we can. We let them dictate terms, which was a bit of a shame."

Saturday night's home match against the Otago Nuggets now shapes as a defining game of the season.

Win, and they keep their playoff hopes alive. Lose, and they will need to beat the Jets away the following week and rely on a whole host of other games going their way.

The players trained yesterday with Bublitz saying they had already started focusing on what they need to do to beat Otago.

He plans to button off the amount of time the players train heading into their last two regular season games to keep plenty of energy in their legs.

The Jets, meanwhile, backed up their win in New Plymouth with another dominant 83-71 performance over bottom of the table Harbour Heat, a side they lost to less than a week ago to.

"I think Palmerston North are a good side," Bublitz said.

"They worked us over and they are very good, they are going to be tough."

In the other result from the weekend, the table topping Auckland Pirates thrashed the Otago Nuggets 101-81.

Ad Feedback

- Taranaki Daily News

Special offers
Opinion poll

How do you expect the Breakers to perform in this season's Australian NBL?

Last season was a blip, they'll be champions once again

They'll go close to another title, beaten finalists I'd say

Playoffs for sure, but can't see them going any further

Not too excited, they'll miss the playoffs again

Vote Result

Related story: (See story)

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content