Pelicans tame defending premiers

Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
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Pelicans registered their maiden win of the new Albany Basketball Association men’s A-grade competition, downing a disappointing Tigers outfit in a low-scoring round 4 affair on Tuesday night.

After losses to Crabs and Ambassadors in the first two rounds of the season, Pelicans produced an impressive first half, which set up the six-point win over the reigning premiers.

In a dour first half, Pelicans made the best start to lead by nine points as big man Jacob Hobbs was dominating the glass and collected three close-range baskets.

Tigers' Joe Santia scans the court for options.
Camera IconTigers' Joe Santia scans the court for options. Credit: Albany Advertiser

Tigers guard John Santia, who started on the bench, broke his side’s scoring drought almost eight minutes in and his four points was the Tigers’ sole baskets as they trailed 4-12 at half-time.

The start of the second half though was far better for previously unbeaten Tigers as they reduced the deficit to four points after five minutes.

Pelicans kept responding as a triple to Andrew Hobbs settled things and then David Stone and guard Ray Antiporta ensured their side remained in front.

Pelicans' Jacob Hobbs goes to the basket.
Camera IconPelicans' Jacob Hobbs goes to the basket. Credit: Albany Advertiser

Antiporta hit a couple of late free throws to secure the 26-20 result and finish with eight points while Jacob Hobbs also collected eight points, to continue his strong start to the season.

John Santia hit nine points for Tigers, in the absence of veteran Tim Button, while Dean Gliosca (five points) and Corey Ward (four) battled hard but their side recorded their first loss of the season.

Meanwhile, Knights are the only undefeated team in the competition after their winning ways continued, this time beating Ambassadors by 11 points.

Young gun Matt Leary dropped 21 points for the victors while Henrick Alforque (12 points) and Tom Edwards (nine) provided vital contributions in the 63-52 result.

Caleb Carmen was terrific for Ambassadors at both ends, finishing with a game-high 22 points.

Barking Owls almost coughed up a second game of the new season, surviving a gallant fightback from Kinjarling Thunder in their fixture.

Owls led by 16 points at half-time but the Thunder stormed home even after Michael Simpson (12) was fouled out of the game.

Cohen Taylor (18) and Daniel Colbung (12) helped the Thunder get close to causing an upset but they fell short, 53-54.

Carwin Garcia (17) and Hamish McMorran (13) did the damage for Owls, who rose to third spot on the ladder. Den/Albany Spartans won their first game of the season on Tuesday night, defeating Crabs 35-16.

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