The Mike Pero Nelson Giants have secured win number nine with a tough 96-92 win over the Wheeler Motor Canterbury Rams.
Point guard Kyle Adnam scored a team high 22 points, Finn Delany had 19 points, and Tohi Smith Milner added 17 points and seven rebounds for the Giants who return to the top of the table with a 9-2 record.
It was a much better effort than the previous weeks for the Rams who did lead by as many as nine points in the third quarter.
In what was a tight fourth quarter, the two teams were tied at 87 apiece before a go ahead three from Delany with 47 seconds left to put the home side up three.
Giants would force a turnover which led to a Adnam layup to put them up five with 34 seconds left. Rams point guard, Xavier Thames would hit a quick three with 28 seconds remaining.
The Rams then fouled Adnam, putting him to the line in which he would convert both to make it a two possession ball game. Thames would hit a circus shot to get within two, but Adnam would hit a further two free throws to ice the win.
Thames would end the game with a game high 24 points, Julian Williams-Washburn had 20, and Winston Shepard III had 19 for the Rams who slump to third straight defeat, dropping to 5-4.
Canterbury will need to bounce back quickly when they travel further south tomorrow to play the SIT Zerofees Sharks who are currently riding a five game winning streak.
Nelson were again without American, Jerry Evans, but they did get a double-double from forward Mika Vukona who had 15 points and 11 rebounds, making all seven field goal attempts.
Week 8: Thursday, June 14
At Trafalgar Centre, Nelson
Mike Pero Nelson Giants 96 (Kyle Adnam 22, Finn Delany 19, Tohi Smith-Milner 17)
The Wheeler Motor Canterbury Rams 92 (Xavier Thames 24, Julian Williams-Washburn 20, Winston Shepard III 19)
Friday, June 15, 7pm
At ILT Stadium, Invercargill
SIT Zerofees Sharks (7-2) v The Wheeler Motor Canterbury Rams (5-4)
Saturday, June 16, 3pm (Live Streamed)
At TSB Bank Arena
Cigna Saints (8-1) v Augusta Mountainairs (2-7)
Saturday, June 16, 5pm
At Pettigrew Green Arena, Napier
Taylor Hawks (5-5) v 2 Cheap Cars Supercity Rangers (1-9)
Sunday, June 17, 3pm
At Ballroom Arena, Manawatu
Go Media Jets (1-8) v Cigna Saints (8-1)