Sydney 100, Adelaide 90
For the third time in three meetings between the clubs, the Sydney Kings piled on the points, reaching 100 in a ten point win over the Adelaide 36ers. It was more of the same as Madgen (31pts), Young (18pts) and Ogilvy (21pts, 9 reb) all had big games. This time, Jesse Sanders also got into the act, tallying 24 points, 10 boards and 8 assists in an impressive performance.
Adelaide entered the game without leader Adam Gibson, who was rested as he recovers from a foot injury aggravated in Friday's win over Perth. Joey Wright mixed things up, bringing Jason Cadee into the starting group but also adding Mitch Creek for Brendan Teys.
It worked early as Adelaide jumped the Kings and got out to a 29-17 lead in the first quarter. Cadee and Ervin relentlessly pushed the ball at every chance while the Kings struggled to find any rhythm.
The Sixers offense continued to flow well early in the second but their defense was even better, forcing Sydney into a bunch of horrible decisions trying to make something from nothing. A wide open dunk by Luke Schenscher had Adelaide out to 36-21 and Shane Heal called a much needed time out.
Sam Young and Ben Madgen went berserk, combing for Sydney's next 24 points (Young 10, Madgen 14) as the Kings went on a 15-0 on their way to a 48-44 lead at half-time. Madgen was firing from outside while Young went to work on the inside. Adelaide went over 4 minutes without scoring as their offense started to stall and they threw up some pretty average shots.
It was neck and neck during the third as both teams scored 24, Sydney leading 72-68. Adelaide had little to play for besides some pride while the Kings needed a win to be any chance of making the playoffs.
The Kings weren't short on heroes and while the Sixers managed to slow Madgen and Young, Jesse Sanders and Tom Garlepp stepped up big. Adelaide had been giving Sanders little respect offensively and he finally made them pay while Garlepp got involved in a big way. Sanders scored 13 for the quarter and added 3 boards while Garlepp was everywhere, scoring 4 points, pulling down 7 boards and adding 4 assists. Adelaide resorted to fouling down the stretch, allowing Sydney to reach 100 and keep alive it's playoff hopes.
The Kings shortened rotation worked well and it's starters all played over 26 minutes and all had good games. Adelaide was too reliant on DJ and Ervin and missed Gibson badly. There's a fair chance Gibbo would have been the difference in this one, able to cull some of Sanders' offense and provide shooting help.
Sydney looked solid though and it's just a shame that if they do make the playoffs they'll face Perth, who have well and truly had their measure.
Adelaide faces Melbourne next Sunday in a rehearsal for their playoff meeting the following week. Gibson will miss again and Adelaide will have it's hands full against a surging Tigers team with the hottest player in the league, Chris Goulding, warming up for the playoffs.
Ervin- Solid game although his perimeter shooting let him down. Asked to do a lot defensively with Gibson out.
Cadee- Started the game well but faded. Shot 3/12 and had 4 turnovers. Defense exposed against bigger Kings guards.
Creek- Couldn't work his way into the game in another sub-par road performance.
Petrie- Needed more from him with Gibbo out but had his hands full guarding Ogilvy and Young at various times.
Johnson- Solid but threw up a few questionable shots in the costly second quarter.
Teys- Surprisingly moved to the bench and gave little.
Schenscher- Another solid game. Adelaide needs him to stay out of foul trouble and give them something at both ends to be a serious title threat.
Carter- Should have started for Gibbo. Did well with his minutes....just needed more.
Anthony- Ok contribution for his minutes but ankle issues seem to still be troubling him.
|Points from Turnovers: 11 Points in the Paint: 34 Second Chance Points: 14 Fast Break Points: 0|
|Coach: Joey Wright Assistant: Kevin Brooks|