It's oh and 14 for the Hawke's Bay franchise in the National Basketball League after they returned home from the Deep South.

The Indigo Hawks lost to the SIT Zerofees Southland Sharks on Saturday night and again yesterday to the Canterbury Rams in round nine.

In Invercargill, coach Kirsten Daly-Taylor would have been left tearing her hair out after they trailed 37-35 at halftime before fading to an 83-59 walloping at the hands of the Sharks.

The hosts claimed their eighth game but, more importantly, posted a half-game lead over the Mike Pero Nelson Giants.

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Nick Kay scored a game-high 18 points and added four steals, Alex Pledger scored 14 and the back court of ex-Hawk Everard Bartlett and Derone Raukawa each added a dozen for the Sharks.

The Hawks struggled offensively, shooting 32 per cent. Their 59 points is the lowest scoring in the NBL this season.

Point guard William Stinnett, in his first start, scored a joint team high of 12 points with US import Kareem Johnson.

The Rams also become strong Final Four contenders with the 95-82 result over the Hawks their ninth win.

McKenzie Moore was one rebound short of a triple double with 16 points, 13 assists and nine rebounds for the Rams. Marcel Jones scored a game-high 30.

Trailing 58-34 after halftime, the Hawks came close to within eight, winning the third 24-15 but the hosts kept their composure to boost their lead by 22.

Johnson had a double-double 21 points, 13 rebounds. Luke Aston added 17 points and seven rebounds as well as four steals. Matt Te Huna scored 15 and made five assists off the bench.