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McCamey lifts Taipans over Hawks

By Chris Pike
19 January 2014 05:51PM EST

THE Sydney Kings beat the Melbourne Tigers on Sunday for a third straight NBL win while Cairns pulled off a remarkable comeback in Wollongong thanks to a Demetri McCamey buzzer-beater.

Round 14 of the NBL ended on Sunday afternoon with two NSW games with the Kings beating the Tigers 97-84 at the Sydney Entertainment Centre while the Cairns Taipans scored an amazing comeback victory 79-77 over the Wollongong Hawks at the WIN Entertainment Centre.

The results come after Round 14 began on Friday night with Sydney beating Cairns in Cairns 92-88 while the league-leading Perth Wildcats hammered the New Zealand Breakers 97-72 at the Perth Arena.

There was then just the one NBL match on Saturday night with the second-placed Adelaide 36ers beating the Townsville Crocodiles at the Adelaide Arena 92-79.

The results of the weekend's action has left the Wildcats (15-3) clear on top of the NBL ladder ahead of the 36ers (12-5).

Melbourne (10-8) remains in third position but the gap is closing to the fourth-placed Sydney (8-8).

Cairns (7-11), Wollongong (6-10), New Zealand (6-11) and Townsville (4-12) are all fighting to remain in contention for a finals berth.

It was a hotly-anticipated contest at the Kingdome on Sunday between the third-placed Tigers and fourth-placed Kings.

In the end, Sydney controlled the match virtually from the outset to come away with the 13-point victory to see the Kings having now won three games on the trot while the Tigers have now lost two straight after an impressive six-game winning run.

Veteran sharpshooter James Harvey led the way for the Kings finishing the game with 21 points, four assists and three rebounds on the back of shooting 7-of-8 from the field and a perfect 4-of-4 from three-point range.

The unheralded Tom Garlepp continued to be the workhorse of the Sydney team adding another 16 points, four rebounds and two assists.

Brad Hill also contributed 13 points and four rebounds, centre AJ Ogilvy 12 points and nine boards, and Ben Madgen 12 points, four rebounds and four assists.

Perhaps the most impressive aspect of the Sydney victory was the fact that it came with only a combined 14 points from imports Sam Young and Charles Carmouche on 5-of-20 shooting from the floor.

Tigers centre Scott Morrison did all he could for his team finishing with 25 points, eight rebounds and three blocked shots on the back of 12-of-15 shooting from the field.

Mark Worthington also added 19 points with Nate Tomlinson scoring 11 points and Chris Goulding a season-low 10.

Meanwhile, in Wollongong, Cairns pulled off one of the great NBL comebacks and then in a thrilling finish came away with the two-point victory to bring an end to its three-game losing run.

Wollongong got off to a hot start against Cairns scoring the game's first four points and the opening up a 13-4 leading during the first period.

That extended to a lead of as much as 16 by half-time.

The home team's lead still stayed beyond double-figures for most of the third quarter before Cairns had managed to close its deficit to eight by three quarter-time.

However, the Hawks still led by 10 points with six minutes left in the game but the Taipans refused to give in and when point guard Jamar Wilson nailed a three with 1.45 to go scores were all tied up at 69-apiece.

Wollongong steadied with two points to Oscar Forman before Wilson again levelled scores with two free-throws with 54 seconds on the clock.

Two Kevin Tiggs free-throws again had the Hawks leading by two, but McCamey tied up the scores again with 29 seconds left before hitting a free-throw to put Cairns in front 74-73.

Wollongong regained the lead two seconds later thanks to Tiggs but a tremendous driving lay-up in traffic from Wilson had Cairns back on top in a brilliant finish.

Wilson then only managed one-of-two free-throws with 18 seconds left before Tiggs hit a superb jumper with eight seconds on the clock to tie scores up.

The game appeared heading to overtime yet again in Wollongong, but McCamey dribbled the ball up the floor, worked his way into the pocket to take a mid-range jumper and he knocked it down as time expired to give the Taipans a remarkable, and crucial, victory.

 

Not only did McCamey hit the game-winning shot for the Taipans, but he was also his team's top-scorer on the afternoon finishing with 20 points, seven rebounds and four assists in an outstanding all-round performance.

He was helped out with a big game from swingman Stephen Weigh who hit 18 points for Cairns to go with five rebounds on the back of hitting 4-of-7 from three-point range.

Import point guard Wilson also added 16 points for the Taipans with veteran Alex Loughton contributing 11 points, eight rebounds and two assists.

Wollongong import Tiggs finished with 27 points while shooting 11-of-20 from the field with his fellow import Rotnei Clarke also adding 15 points.

Forman, Tim Coenraad and Dave Gruber all added 10 points apiece for the Hawks.

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