PNG hammer Tahiti in men’s basketball


PAPUA New Guinea hammered Tahiti 93-51 in their second pool B match of the Pacific Games basketball competition at Faleata Gym in Apia, Samoa yesterday.
It was sweet revenge for the PNG men’s team who avenged their 2015 Pacific Games bronze medal playoff loss.
In a physical encounter that mirrored the 2015 clash, PNG were led by Lloyd Wright, who hit a game-high 21 points, including several dunks, as well as taking five offensive rebounds and four steals.
Wright, his brother Liam, Martineng Leahy and Aaron Farmer, Apia Muri, Moses Lune Apiko and Robert Kave proved to be a class above the Polynesians contributing to a 42-point winning margin: PNG took a 27-15 lead in the opening quarter and the gap widened to the final quarter.
After two rounds of pool play, PNG and Fiji remain unbeaten.
In pool A, defending champions Guam and New Caledonia lead the pool.
One game remains before the qualifying finals on July 15 followed by the semifinals the next day with the final on July 17.
From the tip off it was Papua New Guinea all the way holding a 12-point lead in the first quarter and enjoyed a 46-point lead at one stage in the third quarter.
Eighteen year old Cornelius Muri also featured prominently in his debut at the Pacific Games.
Captain Charles Parapa and Kave also contributed to the team efforts as the side’s main play callers.
Papua New Guinea take on Fiji in the third round with long-serving coach Joel Khalu confident they can beat their Melanesian rivals.

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