Harbour athletes shine at Commonwealth Games

Tiarna Clarke and Ella Fotu, members of the New Zealand 3X3 Tall Ferns team that's coached by Justine Reed, will play for a medal at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

With a 3-0 record in pool play, the 3x3 Tall Ferns have been among the most dominant teams in the Women’s 3x3 competition. They have been led by the play of Jillian Harmon, who has emerged as arguably the top offensive player in the competition; she’s currently the tournament’s leading scorer with 8.3 points per game.

Ella Fotu has been a defensive nightmare for opponents, leading the competition in blocks with 2 per game while Tiarna Clarke remains the team’s best outside threat, leading the 3x3 Tall Ferns shooting from beyond the arc at a 42% clip.

By finishing the top of Pool B the 3x3 Tall Ferns have advanced directly into the semi-final round.  There they await the winner of the Canada vs Scotland quarter-final tie. The semi-final is scheduled for Tuesday 2 August @ 8.30am NZT.

Pool play recaps:

Game 1: New Zealand 15, England 14

The  Tall Ferns won their first contest in the Commonwealth Games, with a thrilling 15-14 victory over hosts England.

Jillian Harmon led the way with 7pts & 4reb, while Kalani Purcell had 5pts and 4reb - including a huge shot from outside the arc to give the Kiwis the late advantage. Ella Fotu had 3pts, all on drives

Game 2: New Zealand 21, Canada 11

The Kiwis enjoyed a dominant 21-11 win over Canada.

Tiarna Clarke was on fire in this one, shooting a perfect 4-4 from outside for her 9pts. New Zealand’s defence was huge – holding Canada to 2-14 shooting inside the arc and forcing 9 turnovers; Ella Fotu with a pair of blocks.

Game 3: New Zealand 19 British Virgin Islands 5

Jillian Harmon led the way with 10 pts & 12reb (6 offensive) while shooting 2/2 form outside. Kalani Purcell had 4 & 2blks, Ella Fotu 3pts & 3blks and Tiarna Clarke with 2. 

Back home and Northern Kāhu remain unbeaten in their 2022 GJ Gardner Homes Tauihi Basketball Aotearoa campaign.

The Kāhu outplayed Southern Hoiho at Eventfinda Stadium last Tuesday winning 95-47 and on Sunday defeated Whai in Tauranga, 88-64.

Against Hoiho Tera Reed scored a season high 21 points, making 4 from 5 from beyond the 3-point arc. Micaela Cocks scored 11 points while Harbour U19 representative Mackenzie Chatfield scored her first Tauihi basket in just her second appearance.

Micaela continued her outstanding for in Tauranga. The leading New Zealand scorer in the League (averaging 16.6 points per game) scored 19 points on a super-efficient 7 from 9 from the field – 4 from 5 3-pointers.

Tera Reed was also in double figures again with 11 points. 

Northern Kāhu play alongside the Auckland Tuatara in a double-header at Eventfinda on Saturday August 6th. The Kāhu will play Queens at 5pm followed by the Tuatara versus Wellington Saints fixture at 7.30pm.

In news from Europe Yanni Wetzell has signed with German League champions Alba Berlin for the 2022-23 season meaning he will play in the prestigious Euroleague as well as the Bundesliga.

After impressing with the Breakers last season Yanni had a short 11 game stint with Baskonia in the Spanish League at the end of the 2021-22 season.


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