THE Manawautu Jets have delivered a serious upset in the New Zealand National Basketball League (NZNBL), downing the Canterbury Rams to the tune of 14 points on Saturday evening.
The Rams came into the game as the favoured side, given they had won two of their eight games, which was three less than the opposition. However, Canterbury produced quite a complete performance, breaking away in the second term and defending the lead for the remainder of the game to keep its season alive.
Shane Temara led the way for the Jets, pouring in a game-high 28 points on 10/17 shooting from the field. He was a reliable source of offence, and could always conjure a bucket whenever his side needed one. Teammate, John Bohannon delivered another double-double, finishing the game with a statline of 20 points and 11 rebounds, while Zane Najdawi did something similar and produced 14 points and 11 boards of his own.
NBL gun Sunday Dech top-scored for the match, finishing the contest with 30 points and eight rebounds for the Rams. He was a spark for a struggling Cantebury side, and kept the home team in the game for much of the game.
It was a high-scoring opening term, with neither side able to truly gain ascendancy. Both clubs were able to find the bottom of the net as they pleased, and managed to surpass 20 points in the first 10 minutes. At the first change of play, the Jets held a one-point advantage, and it was clear they came to play in a big way.
The second term completely belonged to Manuwatu, as the visitors fired on all cylinders and broke away on the scoreboard. It was a run that was set up by a lights out shooting performance from the Jets in this time, as they nailed consecutive buckets from behind the arc and grabbed a double-digit lead. When the buzzer sounded to end the first half, the Jets held a seven-point lead, and were looking to seal the game early on.
Quarter number three was more of the same from the visiting team, continuing to push the tempo and creating some good looks from around the half-court set. Once again, Manuwatu hit the mark from downtown, and their shooting ended up playing a pivotal role. The end of the third saw the margin balloon out to 16 points, with plenty for the Rams to do in the last.
It ended up being too tall of an order for the Rams, who managed to stop the bleeding in the final 10 minutes of play. However, they could not produce enough of a scoring burst to get back on top, and ended up falling by a double-digit margin.