Kiwis Fall To Italy AT FIBA U17 World Cup; Round of 16 Next

After successive wins at the FIBA U17 World Cup in Turkey, the New Zealand U17 Men’s team have been brought back to earth with a thud – after being beaten 69-95 by a previously winless Italy in their third and final group game.

New Zealand struggled for find offensive rhythm in this contest, with Italy’s defensive intensity forcing them into 30 turnovers, which they converted into 34 points. The Italians also adopted a very physical approach, resulting in 31 fouls being called on them (compared with 16 on New Zealand). Unfortunately the Kiwis were unable to capitalise on this zealous approach making just 25 from 46 (54%) from the free-throw line.

Also problematic was New Zealand’s three-point shooting. Making 38% from behind the arc leading into the game, the Kiwis were an ice cold 0-13 in this one.

However it wasn’t all gloomy news, as despite the loss New Zealand have topped their group – something not done previously by New Zealand at a FIBA age-group World Cup. In the round of 16, the Kiwis will play Egypt, the fourth-placed finisher in Group D. The Kiwis will not take the African nation lightly though, as their three losses were by an accumulated margin of just 13 points.

Taranaki’s Oscar Goodman again led the way for New Zealand with 13 points, Lachie Crate scored 10, Hayden Jones 9, while Jackson Kiss and Mana Martin tallied 8 points each. Four players pulled down 7 rebounds as collectively New Zealand held sway in that statistical category – claiming 19 offensive rebounds for a 44-34 advantage overall.

New Zealand started the game in good form, with Goodman making the first three points of the contest. Jones scored 4 points midway through the period and when Troy Plumtree worked his way to the hoop the Kiwis were 14-10 ahead.

Fourteen points apiece at the first quarter break, New Zealand remained on level terms in the opening stages of the second period. After Italy had edged ahead 24-20 Cantabrian guard Mana Martin scored 8 straight points for the Kiwis and with Jones successful from the foul line it was a one-point game (30-31) with four minutes left in the half.

Lachie Crate rattled the rim with a dunk, but New Zealand were outscored 11-4 in the lead up to the interval to trail 42-34 as they headed to the locker room.

The scoring was back and forth in the third as Goodman, Jones, and James Matthews found answers to Italian scores and when Crate made another basket it was a six-point game (50-56). However, after Goodman’s third success in the period New Zealand were outscored 10-3 in the final three minutes of the frame and faced an uphill battle at three-quarter time trailing 69-55.

The deficit quickly grew to 20 points and despite 7 points from Jackson Kiss in the fourth stanza, the Italians had little trouble closing out a decisive victory.

Italy faces our Oceania neighbours Australia (Group D winners) in the upcoming play-offs, while New Zealand will take on Egypt in a sudden death, round of sixteen clash – with the Kiwis no doubt looking for a bounce-back performance.



New Zealand 69 – Goodman 13 PTS, 7 REBS & 4 ASSISTS | Crate 10 PTS | Jones 9 PTS & 7 REBS | Kiss 8 PTS & 7 REBS |Martin 8 PTS | Plumtree 6 PTS & 7 REBS | Dallow 4 PTS | Matthews 4 PTS | Cate 3 PTS | Reed 2 PTS | Te Ratana 1 PT | Ball

Italy 95 – A Lonati 16 | M Accorsi 13

Box Score:

Quarter Scores: 14-14, 20-28, 21-27, 14-26


FIBA U7 Men’s World Cup – New Zealand Schedule and Results

NZL v Turkey – WON 114-94

NZL v Argentina – WON  89-81

NZL v Italy – LOST 95-69

NZL v Egypt – 2.00am NZT, Thursday July 4


NZ Men’s U17 Squad at FIBA U17 World Cup

Jackson Ball, Basketball Hawkes Bay/ Hawkes Bay Hawks

Ihaka Cate, Canterbury Basketball Association/ Canterbury Rams

Lachlan Crate, Basketball Manawatu / Manawatu Jets

Gus Dallow, Harbour Basketball Association / Auckland Tuatara

Oscar Goodman, Basketball Taranaki / NBA Global Academy

Hayden Jones, Nelson Basketball Association / Nelson Giants

Jackson Kiss, Basketball Auckland / Auckland Tuatara

Mana Martin, Canterbury Basketball Association/ Canterbury Rams

James Matthews, Nelson Basketball Association / Nelson Giants

Troy Plumtree, Wellington Basketball Association /Wellington Saints

Jameer Reed, Harbour Basketball Association / Auckland Tuatara

Hunter Te Ratana, Waitakere West Auckland Basketball / Auckland Tuatara