Featured News / August 11th, 2017

Game Report: Boomers v Hong Kong

via nbl.com.au

Behind the athletic wing play of Mitch Creek and Todd Blanchfield, Australia has kept its unbeaten FIBA Asia Cup record alive with a 99-58 win over Hong Kong on Thursday night.

Creek finished with 15 points, nine rebounds, two assists and two steals, terrorising Hong Kong’s defence with his bull-strong drives.

After a sloppy Boomers start, featuring five first-quarter turnovers, Blanchfield checked into the game and blew it wide open with some conscience-free perimeter shooting.

Blanchfield finished with 18 points on 4-of-9 shooting from range to accompany five boards, four assists and a pair of steals.

Both wingmen also threw down some impressive flushes as Australia cranked up the defence and won points off turnovers 20-7 and fast break points 17-5.

The Boomers also won points in the paint 50-24, a well-executed high-low between Daniel Kickert and Matt Hodgson opening the game’s scoring and highlighting the extreme height differential between the two teams.

The second possession featured seven slick passes in 11 seconds, ending with Jason Cadee (5 assists) finding his running mate Cam Gliddon (12 points, 5 rebounds) for a wide-open triple.

Hong Kong opened their scoring with a Fong Shing Yee triple, but Creek reminded them what awaits with a massive block on Xu Adam on his team’s first expedition inside the arc.

The islanders didn’t give it easily to the Aussies, however, triples from Fong and Wong Chun Wai and some sloppy Boomers execution keeping Hong Kong within four points with 2.50 remaining in the opening term.

Enter Blanchfield, the new Sydney Kings swingman busting open the Hong Kong zone with back-to-back trifectas.

Some hustle and a gorgeous pocket pass by Illawarra’s Mitch Norton (11 points, 3 assists) then set up a monstrous Angus Brandt facial for a three-point play and the Aussies took a 28-15 advantage into quarter-time.

An athletic up-and-under from Nick Kay, another Blanchfield dagger from deep and a Mitch McCarron three-point play in the open floor then extended the lead past 20 in the opening 90 seconds of the second stanza.

Daniel Kickert (11 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists) buried his second triple in transition, and when Blanchfield tucked home a perfect lead pass from Cadee with two hands the contest was effectively done.

A nifty left-handed move from Ki Lee finally opened Hong Kong’s second-quarter account, but Creek subdued their excitement with strong one-on-one finish in the open court.

The Adelaide 36ers small forward then sliced open Hong Kong’s half-court defence with a powerful two-hander, before completely a strong three-point play through contact to put a lid on his 11-point first-half haul.

Leading 56-30 after 20 minutes, the Aussie advantage raced past 30 as Hong Kong mistakenly left Daniel Kickert open on the arc, and then gave Creek a sliver along the baseline for another left-handed finish.

Hong Kong big man Duncan Reid (10 points) finally got some supply and showed the low-post skills that have made him a mainstay of Asia Cup basketball since his 2013 debut, pulling his team back within 24.

Enter Blanchfield again with another triple, then Perth centre Angus Brandt’s perfectly timed crossover dribble through two defenders ended in an emphatic left-handed crammer to set up a 36-point three-quarter-time lead.

The Boomers took the foot off the pedal in the final term, but Creek still found time for a leaning, rim-rocking tomahawk from the side of the key that brought the building to life.

Blanchfield then splashed his final triple to punctuate an impressive 41-point victory without rested veterans Brad Newley and David Andersen, and stamp Australia’s 2-0 start to the tournament.

The Boomers next face Chinese Taipei on Saturday night at 11pm AEST, live on Fox Sports.