It was a basket blitz but only one team were left standing grinning when the dust had settled in the second round of the new Basketball Hawke's Bay competition in Napier.
Toro Atu kept their unblemished record intact and the favouritism tag around their necks with a 95-91 victory over the Kings in the men's grade of the Trial Media Elite League at the Rodney Green Events and Entertainment Centre on Wednesday. Seven bombs were dropped from both sides in the opening quarter with Toro Atu pivot Alonzo Burton on eight points and Taylor Corporation Hawk member Dom McGovan on nine for the Kings.
The Kings took a 20-19 lead into the second spell but Toro Atu were done in the three-point project, peeling off seven more to surge to a 48-40 lead at halftime.
Toro Atu's Trey Fergusson chipped in with 11 points while former NBL championship winner Kareem Johnson matched him to keep the Kings in touch.
Regrettably, while the Kings swished five three-pointers in the third quarter their defenders weren't adroit enough to put up the shutters smartly to frustrate Toro Atu who took a commanding 77-67 lead.
Hawks forward Darryl Jones opened the fourth quarter with yet another triple while Johnson and McGovan, including nine three-pointers from 30 in the game, helped nibble away at Toro Atu's lead but to no avail.
Toro Atu 95 (R Mani 22, A Burton 21, J Anderson 19) Kings 91 (D McGovan 32, K Johnson 26).
Napier Boys' High School and Hastings Boys' High had postponed their matches due to Super 8 commitments. NBHS won the crown in Hastings.
However, coach Morgan Maskell was left bristling after another prosaic start from the Napier Girls' High team despite beating the Ravens 57-51.
"We have had a lot of trouble with the consistency our focus levels, intensity and effort in both rounds of this competition," Maskell lamented. "Those are not the things we expect to have to work on at this stage in the season."
He cautioned his schoolgirls of the price they would pay if they took that sort of attitude to their impending tournaments soon.
A sloppy NGHS only managed six points in the opening stanza as the Ravens led 10-6.
Hastings Girls' High School pupil Kaya Rameka had impressed for the Ravens on offence but NGHS soon found their rhythm to take a 29-25 lead into halftime.
The Ravens snipers kept NGHS honest with a high turnover rate from Rameka and elite netballer Kathleen Nahora.
While the Ravens have had two defeats, they should offer one-win Bridge Pa some food for thought in the next round.
NGHS 57 (K Burgess 11, M Cunningham 9) Ravens 51 (K Rameka 15, K Nahora 9).
Guard Raedeen Blake was the toast of Bridge Pa as she ran rings around the bigger Flyers on the way to a 76-67 victory.
Blake's 16 points enabled Bridge Pa to take a 40-27 lead into halftime. It was Madison King's 11 points that kept them in touch.
The Flyers made the most of their height, especially through offensive rebounds but had trouble converting their chances whereas Bridge Pa employed their agility to attack in transition for a 69-44 lead into the final quarter.
However, Bridge Pa had gone off the boil as the Flyers adroitly slowed down the game down but converted timely free throws.
Unfortunately, it was too little too late for the Flyers playing catch up against Bridge Pa.
The teams, on a win/loss record, face Napier Girls High team and the Ravens, respectively.
Bridge Pa 76 (R Blake 23, K Awa 16, K Collier 12) Flyers 67 (M King 19, K Crouch 12, K Spooner 11).
Rd 3 matches
At the PG Arena, Taradale:
■ 6pm: Hastings Old Boys v Napier Tech Sweepers, PGA 2.
■ 6pm: Toro Atu v HBHS, PGA 3.
■ 7.30pm: Bridge Pa v Ravens, PGA 1.
■ 7.30pm: NGHS v Flyers, PGA 2.
■ 7.30pm: NBHS v Kings, PGA 3.