In what was an excellent game at Vector Arena where the Adelaide 36ers managed to get the win over the New Zealand breakers with a steal and full court drive by Gary Ervin with 4 seconds left on the clock to win on the buzzer 95-94.
Mika Vukona opened scoring for the Breakers with an open keyway dunk. On the other end Adam Gibson forced his way to the rim with a strong drive and both teams were off. For the Breakers Tom Abercrombie was hitting some big shots and Vukona was doing well leading the team and they looked like the Breakers from last season taking off to an early 8-2 lead. Gary Ervin got going when he got to the rim and picked up a 3 point play which was later followed by an Ervin steal on the inbound and 36ers were back 12-13. Alex Pledger made some nice blocks through the game and had a big one against Daniel Johnson which was all ball but followed through to the face after the block. The Adelaide 36ers have a strong team that is 10 deep with no starters on the floor, in the final minutes of the quarter the 36ers still looked strong with Jason Cadee, Mitch Creek, Luke Schencher, BJ Anthony and Brendan Teys all possible starters and former starters and the quarter comes to a close with Adelaide holding a 1 point lead 21-22.
The second quarter saw the 36ers break out with some quick baskets thanks to some very nice dishes from Gibson to cutting players and some strong defense from the former best defensive player and the 36ers were up 23-31. But New Zealand we rent letting them get away as Cory Webster hits long 3 and a Kerron Johnson 3 point play and the Breakers were back 29-31 with 7 minutes left in the second quarter it already it looked like a great game with two well matched teams. Alex Pledger was a monster inside and had 3 big blocks for the game. Anthony Petrie made some big plays and had a big block on Alex Pledger who was going going for a jam. The Refs called a rough unsportsmanlike foul on Mika Vukona when he stopped Gary Ervin from getting to the rim which should have been a normal foul. Both teams were running in a track meet up and down the court but Daniel Johnson finished the race with a bug dunk with 2:30 left in the second quarter and the Breakers had 5 fouls 39-46. The fouls have been an issue for the Breakers all season so far. To close the half Gary Ervin made a nice move with a floater and Adelaide were up 46-50 to go into the main break.
Opening the 3rd quarter Anthony Petrie was playing some excellent defense around the rim and Vukona and Petrie were having a good physical battle from the two former Gold Coast Blaze players. The Breakers picked up their defense in the 3rd quarter and Adelaide were struggling to finish around the rim but the offensive rebounds were a problem for the Breakers and kept the 36ers alive. Tom Abercrombie was hitting all his shots and the 36ers were drying up. Joey wright subbed off Gary Ervin and did not look happy as the Breakers pull out to 62-54 with 5 minutes left in the quarter. The Third quarter comes to a close with Mika Vukona making a killer spin move to go base line with an up and under the rim lay up with the Breakers up 73-66.
In the quarter time huddle both coaches want their teams to run the ball. Both teams were struggling to shoot the ball but the Breakers were holding onto the lead by the 5 minute mark 82-75. Anthony Petrie made it to the line and got his free throws in which was followed by a Gary Ervin 3 pointer to break the drought for the 36ers and it was 86-82 with 3 minutes left to play. An Adam Gibson strip and pick up from Jarrid Frye and the 36ers were back within 2 points with 2 minutes left and a time out was called and the crowd was silent. Mika Vukona fouls out with 2 minutes left of game time and it was a big loss to the Breakers. Their was a good rebound contest between Alex Pledger and Jarrid Frye and the foul goes against Frye but when Pledger struggled to get up he had to take a seat and the Breakers got to bring in Darryl Corletto to shoot his free throws to make it 91-89. With a 92-89 lead and 14 seconds left in the game Kerron Johnson fouled Gary Ervin who made them both 92-91. Corletto then got to the line again to hopefully seal the game making both, 94-91 with 8 seconds left. Kerron Johnson fouled Ervin again not letting them get a 3 to tie it up. Joey Wright brings in Luke Schencher for the rebound on a missed second shot but Gary Ervin accidentally made them both 94-93. With 4 seconds left on the clock and a half court Breakers inbound Gary Ervin stole the ball on the inbound ran the length of the floor and layed it up on the buzzer to get Adelaide the win 95-94. In what could be the best game of the season so far Gary Ervin had this to say on the buzzer beating Breaker killing play. "Its unbelievable to win a game like that, i have been on the losing side in games like that but its nice to on the winning side."
Adelaide 36ers 95 (Ervin 26, Johnson 20, Frye 12)
New Zealand Breakers 94 (Abercrombie 21, Vukona 17, Johnson 17)