Coach happy with weekend

The Otago Nuggets will enter their season following a win and a loss.

They split their pre-season matches against the Southland Sharks in Queenstown over the weekend.

On Saturday the Nuggets claimed a 77-62 win over their southern rival.

However, yesterday the Sharks bounced back to win 84-57.

Nuggets coach Brent Matehaere was happy with how the weekend went.

There had been some good aspects and the team had learnt plenty.

He said the side had shown some good connections, notably between import Geremy McKay and Sam Timmins.

He also praised Richie Rodger’s shooting performance yesterday, the guard hitting five three-pointers to score 15 points.

A fast start from the Nuggets helped the side out to a 21-10 lead at the end of the first quarter.

The Sharks came back to close the gap to 30-29 at halftime, but the Nuggets were able to take control down the stretch to claim a handy win.

Yesterday the Sharks jumped out to a 19-14 lead on the back of 11 first-quarter points from Brayden Inger.

They extended that to 37-26 at halftime, before a big third quarter left the deficit at 24 as they led 65-41.

Inger finished with 19 points for the Sharks, while Alonzo Burton had 18.

For the Nuggets, Rodger’s 15 points led the way, while Timmins had a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds.

The Nuggets begin their National Basketball League campaign this Saturday when they host the Wellington Saints at the Edgar Centre.

Two days later the Sharks begin their season in Nelson against the Giants.

Meanwhile, a Central Otago women’s select team put on an impressive display to beat the Otago Gold Rush 66-46.

The Gold Rush begins its season in August.

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