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    Tuffin haunts old team Taranaki anew as Saints post 4th win in row

    Jul 2, 2021
    Wellington Saints huddle

    KEN Tuffin delivered the killer blows for the Wellington Saints as they pulled a come-from-behind 89-81 win over the Taranaki Mountainairs Friday in the 2021 NZ NBL season at TSB Stadium.

    The Fil-Kiwi gunner fired 10 points on 2-of-3 shooting from beyond the arc, but more importantly the go-ahead freebies as Wellington crawled its way back from 12 points down.

    Ken Tuffin vs Taranaki

    Tuffin canned his charities that made it a 78-77 affair with 3:47 left as it came in the middle of the Saints' ruthless 19-6 finishing kick after staring at a 75-70 deficit with 7:06 remaining.

    He also grabbed two rebounds as Wellington made it a clean sweep against his former team and tighten its grip of the top spot with a 12-2 record.

    Tohi Smith-Milner led the Saints with 25 points, 15 rebounds, three assists, two steals, and a block, as Dion Prewster also was bullish with his 24 points, six boards, three dimes, and two steals to stretch their win streak to four.

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    Taane Samuel added 14 points and three rebounds, while Kerwin Roach Jr. had 10 points and six boards in a game where Wellington survived despite only shooting 7-of-30 from deep.

    What worked, though, was its inside game, grabbing 44 rebounds to Taranaki's 26 and scoring 42 points in the paint.

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    Wellington can solidify its spot in the semifinals when it plays the Manawatu Jets (4-10) at Ballroom B and M Centre next Saturday.

    The Saints survived the 29-point explosion of Marcel Jones, as he also got six rebounds and six assists for the Mountainairs.

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      Tai Wynyard chimed in 11 points and four boards, as Haize Walker and Scott Telfer both scored 11 each.

      Former Enderun guard Francis Mulvihill also gathered three points, four rebounds, and two assists in the losing cause for Taranaki as it sunk to a 2-12 card.

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