Men put on a thrilling spectacle

Taj StubberAlbany Advertiser
Blazers' Tom Powell takes on Ambassadors' Pieter Coetzee.
Camera IconBlazers' Tom Powell takes on Ambassadors' Pieter Coetzee. Credit: Laurie Benson

The Albany Basketball Association men’s competition is already living up to expectations, with all three games decided by less than 10 points.

New basketball club Railways stepped onto the court against last year’s grand finalists Barking Owls on Tuesday night, jumping to an early eight-point lead.

Barking Owls found their feet and trailed by three points after Tristan McKenzie hit a three.

Railways scored the next three buckets to push the margin back out to eight points.

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Four of the last five scores went to Barking Owls, with Brody Hickey hitting a three-pointer with less than a minute left to put his side up by one point.

Ambassadors' Todd Knuiman looks to get past Blazers' Zac Pearson.
Camera IconAmbassadors' Todd Knuiman looks to get past Blazers' Zac Pearson. Credit: Laurie Benson

The lead changed multiple times at the start of the second half, with Barking Owls drawing away by four points before Henrick Alforque got his side back to one point after hitting a three.

Youngster Liam Murdock hit a three to take the Barking Owls’ advantage back out to four points, before buckets to Alforque and big man Kalin Lane got Railways back on level terms.

Railways would score the next two to be up by four points before Lane extended the margin to six points with less than three minutes to play. Murdock and Sam Finigan scored for the Barking Owls to reduce the margin to two points with a minute remaining.

Brody Hickey stole the ball off Railways and then was fouled, sending him to shoot two free throws after the buzzer. Hickey calmly put both of them in to steal a 50-50 draw for the Barking Owls.

Hickey was on fire in the second half, hitting 14 points as he and Finigan finished with 17 points each.

Blazers' Jeffery Fitzpatrick gets around Ambassadors' Todd Knuiman.
Camera IconBlazers' Jeffery Fitzpatrick gets around Ambassadors' Todd Knuiman. Credit: Laurie Benson Albany Advertiser

Lane scored a game-high 21 points with some dunks, while Henrick Alforque added 9 points.

In the other round 1 fixtures, Tigers gave reigning champs Knights a fright as they fell just short, 33-30.

Luke McGuire was a game-high scorer with 14 points for the Knights, Corey Hill was Tigers’ highest scorer with 12.

Ambassadors overcame a determined new Blazers side, winning 52-43. Blazers put up a strong challenge before Ambassadors pulled away late in the game.

Ryan Barber top scored with 12 points for the Ambassadors while Calum Dixon and Todd Knuiman both added 10 points each. Zac Pearson shot a game-high 15 points for the Blazers in their first game.

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