The Bay Hawks have won their first game under new coach Benny Hill, tipping over the Supercity Rangers in the National Basketball League tonight.
With coach Kirsten Daly-Taylor being replaced by Hill on Thursday, the Hawks responded well in the short time frame to notch just their second win of the season, beating the Rangers 101-95 to move to 2-6 on the season.
Tony Tolovae led the Hawks with 21 points, while Jarrod Kenny controlled proceedings with 18 points, seven rebounds and six assists. Import centre Amir Williams had his most impactful outing with 18 points (on 8/8 shooting) and eight rebounds, while Josh Fox chipped in with 13 points, eight rebounds and four assists.
Mitch McCarron had 31 points, seven rebounds and five assists for the Rangers, while Lindsay Tait had 19 points, six rebounds and nine assists.
The Rangers were level with the Hawks in most areas, but the difference came from beyond the arc. While the Hawks hit 41 per cent from deep (7/17), the Rangers connected on only one of 16 threes - a mark which surely won't repeat.
Earnest Ross finished with 19 points, Nnanna Egwu put up 12 points and 11 rebounds and veteran Dillon Boucher had 10 rebounds and seven assists as the Rangers dropped to 4-4 on the season.
In the night's other game, the Southland Sharks hammered the Taranaki Mountainairs 97-67.
The Sharks big men were the difference, with Alex Pledger (16 points, 13 rebounds), Nick Kay (14 points, nine rebounds and five assists) and James Hunter (14 points and 12 rebounds) all performing as the Sharks dominated on the glass, claiming 54 rebounds to the Airs' 32.
Reuben Te Rangi added 21 points, five rebounds, three assists and three steals as the Sharks shot out to a 50-28 halftime lead and were never troubled. The Airs had a pitiful 39 points at three quarter time but avoided an unwanted spot in the record books by padding their total in garbage time.
The Sharks have a healthy gap in second spot on the NBL ladder with a 6-3 record, while the Airs fall to 3-6 before their clash with the 2-8 Nelson Giants tomorrow night.