Just as the women, the men’s college programme in America has also been severely disrupted by COVID-19. However, there are still close to 40 Kiwis on basketball scholarships in America.
Tall Black Kruz Perrott-Hunt scored in double figures for the fifth time in the last seven games but his 11 points (3/5 3PG) weren’t enough to prevent South Dakota being upset 85-76 by North Dakota. They are now 9-3 in conference play and sit joint top of the Summit League. Perrott-Hunt shares some insight into his basketball story here.
Thomas Webley, a Canterbury Ram in 2020, had a nice contribution of 10 points (4/5FG) and 8 rebounds in Hartford Hawks 67-57 loss to New Jersey. It was the second ten-point haul of the season for the former Cashmere High School forward. Listen in to Webley talking about his time at his new school here.
There have been countless fine displays by the numerous Kiwis playing NCAA Division II basketball. Conor Flanagan heads the highlight reel this week with a career-best performance.
The former Auckland Grammar forward had a massive game in West Florida’s 85-75 win over Montevallo. He knocked down eight three-pointers on his way to a career-high 28 points, missing just two attempts from beyond the arc.
Wilfred Dickson is having a fine season for the North Dakota Mines. A 68-52 defeat of Colorado Christian propelled North Dakota to 8-8 in the Rocky Mountain Conference with Dickson scoring a team-high 20 points (3/4 3PG), 5/5FT).
The former Napier Boys’ High School standout leads the North Dakota scoring this season averaging 12.9ppg. 2020 Canterbury Ram Ben Carlisle-Smith pulled down five rebounds for Colorado Christian in the same game.
Another Ram, Mac Stodart, was prominent for Concordia University Irvine at the weekend despite his team suffering two defeats at the hands of Point Loma.
The 2019 NZ Under 17 international scored a dozen (5/11FG) on Saturday followed by 11 points on Sunday. The freshman is averaging a very encouraging 10.3 points per game.
Dallas Baptist University (12-2 in conference games) and Will Heather are enjoying a profitable season. Heather had nine points and five rebounds in DBU’s 112-62 rout of Southwestern Adventist. His points tally matched his season average with the former Rosmini College forward leading the team in blocks (20) and is second in assists (47).
In the NAIA, Milligan Buffaloes, now 5-4 in the Appaclachian Athletic Conference, went down 80-64 to Columbia International. Finn McClure had a fine all-round game for Milligan with eight points, a season-best six rebounds, three assists and two steals.
Even more eye catching was Maxim Stephens’ effort for Rocky Mountain College in the Frontier Conference game against Montana Tech. Rocky went down 70-62 but the former Junior Tall Black finished with a monster double-double of 19 points (7/15FG, 3/5 3PG) and 13 rebounds. Stephens is the leading scorer (14.1ppg), rebounder (7.2rpg) and shot blocker for Rocky this season!
In Europe, Sam Timmins has made a fine start to his spell with Tallina Kalev in the Estonian League. Signed for the Otago Nuggets for the 2021 NBL season, Timmins is averaging 10.7 points, 9.7 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game.
Despite Tallina losing 81-71 to Rapia at the weekend, Timmins was immense with 18 points, 14 rebounds and five blocks.
Matt Freeman, recently signed by Franklin Bulls for the 2021 NBL season, is averaging 11.2ppg for Trier in the German second division, scoring in double digits in five of the ten games he has played.
Tall Black Isaac Fotu is working his way back to fitness having not played for Venezia in the Italian League since late December due to injury.
Nearer to home, Mike Karena scored his first Australian NBL points in South East Melbourne’s 96-71 mauling of the Perth Wildcats on Sunday. The Tall Black has joined SEM on a short-term contract as an injury replacement and scored a couple of points at the end of the contest.