GAME 4 – AUS v CHI
The Australian Rollers have stayed undefeated with a 21-point win over China at the AOZ Championships.
Following a big win over Iran, the Rollers started the game with low energy levels and China took advantage of this soft approach. Despite China’s attempts, the Australian’s had the lead at the end of the first quarter, leading 14-11.
The second term saw China produce some impressive perimeter shooting, keeping them in the contest. Head Coach Craig Friday made changes, putting Michael Auprince and Clarence McCarthy-Grogan into the game. The two were able to provide the energy the team needed. China started to develop defensively, challenging the Rollers to make outside shots and poor turnovers. The Australians were down by three points at half time, shooting at just 37% from the floor and rebounding nearly half of what China was.
As the second half began the Rollers came out re-energised with more intensity and intent. They gained control of the game with Bill Latham making his presence known with 14 points alongside the contributions from Jannik Blair and Kim Robins, who were assisting in making an impact on the scoreboard. The Rollers effort in the third quarter resulted in a ten-point lead at the final break, with just one quarter to go.
The final term saw Auprince replace Latham, instantly hitting the scoreboard with Tom O’Neill-Thorne also producing mid-range shots to continue their lead. The Rollers had a ten-point lead with seven minutes of play left and at this point they began to display their dominance, going on to push their lead out to 21 points and securing a 67 – 46 win.