PNG beats Tahiti in close encounter

Seventh ranked PNG has defeated bronze medal holders Tahiti in a close encounter 81-70 tonight in the men’s basketball at BSP Arena.

With Tahiti ahead throughout the match, PNG bounced back in the final quarter thanks to Gabriel Elavo’s five three point shots helping PNG up with 15 points.

Tahiti took the lead in the first quarter 20-13 with the help of captain Ariitimarau Meuel and Rahitiarii Teriierooiteral and maintained their lead in the second quarter 36-34.

With their home crowd behind them, PNG pushed their way through the third quarter but were still trailing by three points as they tried to close the gap 57-54.

In the final quarter, pressure was on as PNG took the lead at three minutes to full time with double three shots from Elavo.

The crowd went wild as the final minutes countdled down to take PNG home by 11 points 81-70.

PNG supporters including Prime Minister Peter O’Neill congratulated the team following the win.

This is PNG’s fourth win and Tahiti’s first loss. PNG takes on Samoa tomorrow.