Westlake Basketball NZ Champions 2013

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7 Oct 2013

Mr Mark Jackson assisted by Phil Campbell and manager Mr  Nic Sullivan guide Westlake to NZ Title

Westlake Boys High School successfully defended their New Zealand Secondary Schools title with a 78-68 win over archrivals Rangitoto at Palmerston North on Saturday evening.

Their 28-8 surge through the second quarter, keyed by high-scoring guard JAYLEN GERRAND, was instrumental in turning a double-figure deficit into a lead by halftime. Rangitoto jumped out to a 16-4 starts with forward ISAAC DAVIDSON quickly heating up from the arc. He had three from long range in the opening quarter and his team were 25-12 up after the first quarter. But the champions emerged from the first break with a new sense of purpose and with Gerrand repeatedly finding his way to the basket, Westlake reeled off 18 straight points to turn the tables.

They were 40-33 ahead at halftime and, although Rangitoto got their noses in front briefly late in the third period, their opponents were now controlling the game through Gerrand, and – defensively, JOSH HOWE and recent Tall Black recruit JACK SALT. For a while, the contest became a shootout between Gerrand, who dropped 41 points on Rosmini in the semi-final game the night before, and Rangitoto sharpshooter DERONE RAUKAWA, who had two 40 point performances earlier in the week.

Gerrand scored 15 points during Westlake’s second-quarter outburst, but was able to share his load among his team-mates, especially after Matt Freeman returned from his foul-imposed spell on the bench. Once Davidson’s early threat passed, Raukawa became Rangitoto’s only real offensive weapon, finishing with a game-high 35 points, including five three-pointers. Gerrand led his side with 26 points, but enjoyed assistance from Howe (22 points/15 rebounds) and Salt (14 points/16 rebounds).

Westlake, a production for Tall Blacks in recent years, have now won the title five times with current or future international players including Corey Webster, Tom Abercrombie, Rob Loe, Tai Webster and most recently, Salt.

2013 National Secondary Schools Basketball Final
Westlake Boys High School 78 (Jaylen Garrand 28, Josh Howe 20, Jack Salt 15, Matt Freeman 11)
Rangitoto College 68 (Derone Raukawa 35, Isaac Davidson 16)

Q1 12–25
Half Time 40-33 (28-8)
Q3 55-50 (15-17)
Full Time 78–68 (23–18)

Tournament team:
Jaylen Gerrand (Westlake Boys)
Hyrum Harris (Fraser)
Josh Howe (Westlake Boys)
Izayah Mauriohooho Le’afa (St Patrick’s)
Derone Raukawa (Rangitoto)
Angus Riley (Nayland)
Jack Salt (Westlake Boys)
Tohi Smith-Milner (Rosmini)
Sam Timmins (Otago Boys)
Luke Witteveen (Rangitoto)

Tournament MVP:
Jaylen Gerrand (Westlake Boys)

Images by Basketball NZ photographers Maree Taylor and Shaun Iwikau