Wellington suffered its first loss in the 2021 Sal’s New Zealand-National Basketball League Season, as it took a tough 70-84 loss by Southland, Friday afternoon at ILT Stadium.
Tuffin was held down to just eight points on 3-of-8 shooting from the field.
But it was not just the former FEU Tamaraw whom the Sharks shackled, as they also zoned in the Saints’ Big Three.
Dion Prewster, who was averaging 24.2 points per game, saw himself limited to just 11 points on 4-of-12 shooting. Meanwhile Kerwin Roach tallied 17 points, seven rebounds, and six assists, but ended up committing seven turnovers before fouling out.
Same with Taane Samuel, who had six turnovers in the game while finishing with 13 markers and just two boards.
The Sharks implemented a perfect game in the first half, leading 43-32.
Despite seeing their lead dwindle to six, 64-58, entering the final frame, Courtney Belgar pushed the pedal in a fourth quarter surge. Alonzo Burton, Brayden Inger, and Dominique Kelman-Poto put the finishing kick that saw the Sharks extend their lead to 84-68 with 32 seconds left.
All in all, the Saints just went 4-of-16 from the field in the last 10 minutes of the game. Wellington took their first game against Southland, 105-73, last May 7.
Wellington fell to 6-1, while Southland rose to 7-3.
All Sharks starters scored in double-figures with Belgar leading the way with 19 points, seven assists, and two steals. Kelman-Pato tallied a double-double with 17 points and 11 boards.
There will be no rest for Wellington as it faces Canterbury tomorrow.