Blaze sunk by Breakers in battle
GOLD Coast Blaze playoff aspirations suffered a blow on Sunday night when the team failed to close out an epic game against the New Zealand Breakers, then lost 123-115 in double-extra-time.
The top-of-the-table Breakers led for most of the night, until the Blaze snuck ahead with its first lead of the game with 6:48 to play.
Stephen Hoare caught a loose rebound to finger roll the basket from close range and bring up the lead and the Gold Coast Convention centre went wild.
The teams battled to stay in front at the end of regulation, but the scores were tied at 101-101.
Chris Goulding fouled out with 53 seconds to play in overtime and sent Carl Bruton to the foul line where he sank one from two and gave the Breakers a 108-106 lead.
Then, with 34 seconds on the clock, Dillon Boucher fouled out and sent Hoare to the line for the Blaze. Hoare calmly made both free-throws to level the game at 108-108.
One extra basket to both teams sent the game into a second overtime, with the scores locked at 110-110.
The scoring opened in the second overtime period when Darryl Hudson made one free-throw to put the Blaze up, but Bruton was wide open moments later to land a triple and then Kirk Penney hit another amazing three-pointer.
Brasswell made the lead eight with two freebies with 57 seconds left and the Breakers were in control at 121-113.
James Harvey made a late basket for the Blaze but the Breakers found Penney alone under the basket at the other end to seal the victory as the Breakers stayed top of the table in a nail-biter.
The two teams clash again tomorrow night across the Tasman in New Zealand.
New Zealand 123 (Penney 35, Wilkinson 21, Bruton 20) d Gold Coast 115 (Harvey 27, Clarke 23, Gibson 19).