Nick Kay and his Perth Wildcats have kept a hold of the top spot in the NBL (National Basketball League) with a 92-78 victory over the New Zealand Breakers on Saturday at RAC Arena.
Tamworth native Kay was strong once again with 12 points, six rebounds and four assists.
New Zealand kept the game close for the first three quarters, until Perth were able to limit them to only seven points in the final term.
Bryce Cotton led all scorers with 23 points, nine rebounds and two steals.
Clint Steindl was lights-out, shooting 75 per cent from the field, including five-from-five from behind the arc.
The Wildcats bench was also pivotal to Perth winning, contributing 36 points.
Coach Trevor Gleeson said they showed up when it mattered most.
“We needed some energy, we kind of felt the squad on at the time was running in mud, and so we needed a spark and they certainly sparked us,” he said.
“Tonight it was their turn and they really stepped up and that’s the pleasing part of it.
“We think we’re pretty deep and we’ve got some guys that can flat-out go, so it’s good to be able to all on them and get that response.”
Mitch Norton started in place of Damian Martin, who was out with an injury.
Norton scored eight points, six assists and five rebounds.
Gleeson said games like this are important to his progress as a player. “It was a really good one for him to get under the belt, in a tight contest with a quality opposition,” he said. “He’s smart, he’s tough and I’ll back him every day of the week.”