‘Cats sweep Hawks to win record Eighth Championship

Sunday March 5, 2017 by  

Bryce Cotton arrived to revive the Perth Wildcats season and not only did he do that, he delivered another championship with 45 points in the 95-86 National Basketball League Grand Final Game Three win over the Illawarra Hawks on Sunday.

Congratulations Perth Wildcats, 2016/17 NBL Champions.
Photo courtesy of NBL Media

The Wildcats returned to Perth Arena trying to sweep the best-of-five series over the Hawks with 13,611 fans cheering them on, and appeared set to cruise to that task after scoring the opening 12 points.

But the Hawks made the Grand Final on guts and determination, and fought valiantly to be within two late in the third term.

Cotton was the difference, though and nailed a miracle three to open the fourth quarter on the way to the nine-point win. Read more

Copybook ‘Cats repeat dose without Knight

Wednesday March 1, 2017 by  

The Perth Wildcats are one game away from a second straight title after Wednesday night’s come-from-behind win over Illawarra in game two of the best of five grand final series.

After beating the Hawks 89-77 in game one in Perth, the Wildcats overturned a 45-40 half-time deficit to prevail by the identical 89-77 score line in Game 2.

Bryce Cotton led Perth with 20 points and Casey Prather added 18, while Angus Brandt (15 points) filled a huge void after Matt Knight had to be assisted off the court early in the third term, suffering apparent concussion symptoms. Read more

Desperate ‘Cats out-hustle Hawks

Sunday February 26, 2017 by  

The three-pronged attack of Casey Prather, Bryce Cotton and Matt Knight lifted the Perth Wildcats to the 89-77 win over the Illawarra Hawks at Perth Arena on Sunday to open the National Basketball League Grand Final Series.

After some rust showed early, it was Knight giving the ‘Cats some respite with 10 first quarter points following a strong start from a Hawks side missing import Marvelle Harris, and centre AJ Ogilvy fighting through an injured ankle.

Knight had the touch from 15-20 feet from the get-go and continued hitting his mid-range jumpers throughout the evening to finish with 18 points. Read more

Hawks rise to the occasion, advance to GF

Thursday February 23, 2017 by  

It was a war of attrition at Titanium Security Arena in Thursday night’s National Basketball League semi-final decider, and for the better part of 40 minutes only one team truly turned up.

The Illawarra Hawks showed the poise needed on the big stage, holding off a stunning late Adelaide 36ers run, winning 106-98, and booking a date with the Perth Wildcats in the Grand Final.

Buoyed by 66 bench points the Hawks played like the 36ers have played the majority of the season – unified and clinical. Marvelle Harris and Rotnei Clarke captained the ship in the first half, whilst resurgent big men Cody Ellis and Tim Coenraad finished the journey in the second. Read more

Hawks show huge heart to force Game Three

Sunday February 19, 2017 by  

Unsung guard Mitch Norton answered the bell in crunch time to help the Illawarra Hawks defeat Adelaide 100-94 in a thrilling NBL semi-final Game Two on Sunday at WIN Entertainment Centre.

Thrashed by the 36ers in Thursday’s opening game of their best-of-three series, the Hawks responded as they have all season with their backs to the wall to set up a deciding third game in Adelaide this Thursday.

Norton stepped up with a season-high 17 points, while Tim Coenraad tallied 17 points and 10 rebounds – the second double-double of his career – in another strong performance off the bench. Read more

Randle walks the walk for the Sixers

Thursday February 16, 2017 by  

Newly crowned NBL Most Valuable Player Jerome Randle put the Adelaide 36ers team on his back with 18 first-half points as the Sixers outgunned the visiting Illawarra Hawks 93-78 in Game 1 of their Semi Final series.

Randle needed to put forward his best after calling the Hawks a “dirty team” that he “didn’t like playing” against mid-week. He certainly rose to the occasion, bringing some of his Chicago A-game.

Such was his energy expenditure that he violently cramped up at the start of the fourth term, only to return at the midpoint and deal some final damage. Read more

Hawks lock in playoff spot with Bullets beatdown

Saturday February 11, 2017 by  

The Illawarra Hawks became the third team to cement a spot in the finals with Saturday night’s 106-79 rout of the Brisbane Bullets at WIN Entertainment Centre.

Depending on results of remaining games, the Hawks will finish either second, third or fourth with a 15-13 record.

The Bullets had little to play for and finished their comeback season to the NBL with a 10-18 record. Read more

Boone dominates in grind-out win

Monday February 6, 2017 by  

Former NBA big men Josh Boone and David Andersen came up big as Melbourne United scored a priceless 78-72 win over Illawarra Hawks on Monday night.

With the Hisense Arena roof open, Melbourne veteran bigs came up big as Boone’s 20 points and 12 rebounds plus Andersen’s 10 second-half points proved too much for the Hawks who fell in front of 6,947. They remain second on the ladder, while Melbourne elevates to third.

Rotnei Clarke’s 19 points and Oscar Forman’s 12 points from four three-pointers were excellent for the Hawks but they will rue losing the rebound count 48-42 and giving up 16 offensive rebounds, many of them to Boone. Read more

Hawks hold off late Snakes surge

Friday February 3, 2017 by  

It had all the makings of a rout but in the end the Illawarra Hawks had to sweat out a nerve-wracking 90-73 win over Cairns on Friday night at WIN Entertainment Centre.

Leading by 26 in third quarter, the Hawks survived a late comeback to secure their 14th win of the season and remain in second spot with two games to play.

Cairns gave the home crowd a big scare when they cut the margin to six with four minutes remaining, but the Hawks regained their composure down the stretch to close out a crucial victory. Read more

Taipans survive mammoth Hawks comeback

Sunday January 22, 2017 by  

It was a sick sense of déjà vu for the Cairns Taipans in front of their home crowd, but the Orangemen have scraped through after yet another second-half meltdown to beat the Illawarra Hawks 85-79 on Sunday afternoon.

The game looked all but over when the Snakes rode a 15-1 run to lead by 21 points midway through the third term, but opened the floodgates after an outstanding 2.5 quarters of defence following their game in Perth less than 48 hours prior.

With each Illawarra bucket, the crowd and Taipans got more nervous, with coach Aaron Fearne screaming at his shell-shocked players to re-focus and increase tempo. Read more