With the first day of the Schick 3x3 Cup in the books, let’s take a look back on an exciting 48 games of 3x3 basketball and see who were the winners - and losers - in Pool Play on Day 1 of action.
The Top Teams After Day 1
In Men’s Pool A, both the Whai Men and Otago Nuggets went 3-0 in this pool on Day 1; Whai sitting top of the ladder thanks to their superior Points per game average (21.3 to Otago’s 21), and both teams dominating the competition. Auckland Tuatara sit in third with a 2-1 record.
Women’s Pool A also saw the Whai Women’s (18.7ppg) on top with a 3-0 record, just ahead of the Otago Gold Rush (18.3ppg) with their own 3-0 record. The Auckland Dream slot in at 3rd place with a 2-1 record, despite being handicapped with only 3 players in the first day of action – Sharne Robati set to join her teammates in Day 2.
In Men’s Pool B, a trio of southern teams all boast a 3-0 record; the hometown Southland Sharks on top with a 21.3 Points per game average, following by the Mid City Magic (21ppg) and Canterbury Rams (19.7ppg).
And Women’s Pool B sees both the Mainland Pouakai (20.3ppg) and Northern Kahu (20ppg) top of the table after Day 1; Pouakai using a balanced scoring effort to lead their pool. In third is Wellington with a 2-2 record, while the Nelson Sparks hot on their heels in 4th with a 2-1 record of their own.
Top Day 1 Performances
We witnessed some great performances by some incredible 3×3 athletes on Day 1 of the Schick 3×3 Cup – and none more so than Maia Jones and Nikau McCullough, who were named the Schick Standout Performers for their Day 1 efforts.
17-year-old Jones led all female scorers with 31 points over 3 games, including a Cup-leading 12 shot from outside the arc – that’s a staggering 4 makes from downtown per game. Even more amazing, Maia was able to lead the Sparks to a 2-1 record in Day 1, despite her squad being reduced to three players for two of those games.
McCullough has led his Nuggets to a 3-0 record on Day 1, scoring 29 points over 3 games (2nd behind Ethan Rusbatch) and making some huge shots for the team – including 10 shots combined from behind the arc. Behind Nikau’s play, Otago could be in line to add another trophy to their championship cabinet.
Two other ballers who stood out were Ben Hall from the West Coast Rapids (29 points, 3rd in men’s comp) and Malama Leaupepe who scored 29 points for Wellington (2nd in the women’s comp).
Top 5 Men’s Scorers after Day 1: Ethan Rusbatch, Hawke’s Bay Hawks (33pts); Nikau McCullough, Otago Nuggets (29pts); Ben Hall, West Coast Rapids (29pts); Taylor Britt, Canterbury Rams (24pts); Josh Aitcheson, Mid City Magic (23pts)
Top 5 Women’s Scorers after Day 1: Maia Jones, Nelson Sparks (31pts); Malama Leaupepe, Wellington (29pts), Nicole Gleason, Otago Gold Rush (24pts), Laura Jackson, Southland Storm (23pts); Tiarna Clarke, Auckland Dream
Looking Ahead – Day 2
Day 2 tips off on Thursday 13 October with another 48 games on tap. View the full schedule at schick3x3.basketball/schedule
Catch all the action live at Sky Sport!