The surging Supercity Rangers have won their third straight with an 84-79 win over the Taranaki MountainAirs.
After trailing by two at halftime, the Rangers put the clamps on the Airs winning the third quarter 28-9. The Rangers pushed their lead to 19, but a late flurry by the Airs closed to within three, but at that stage they had to foul the Rangers who were able to convert their free throws to hold on for the win.
Point guard Lindsay Tait carried the Rangers, playing the whole game, tallying 22 points, seven rebounds and four assists. Despite being in foul trouble in the first half, Eric Devendorf managed to score a team high 23, and fellow Syracuse alumni, Terrence Roberts, added 10 points and 11 rebounds.
It was the first loss at home and second straight for the Mountainairs who drop to 3-3 and are now behind the Rangers in the standings. Taranaki did welcome back American, Marcus Johnson, who led all scorers with 30 to go along his 12 rebounds. Jordan Ngatai had 17 and the only other notable scorer was Houston O'Riley (10).
Taranaki will look to end their losing streak when they travel to the Hawkes Bay to face the Indigo Hawks (0-7) next Saturday. The Rangers (3-3) will play their next game in Te Awamutu against the Wellington Saints (4-2) on Thursday and then in Nelson against the Mike Pero Giants (6-2) on Saturday, making it a prime opportunity to break into the top four.