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Breakers swept by Bullets in pre-season

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 17/09/2016 Daniel Gilhooly

The New Zealand Breakers have been whitewashed on home soil by the Brisbane Bullets in a three-game NBL pre-season series.

The Australian club produced their best offensive display of the series, winning 86-77 in Invercargill to follow the opening 80-70 win in Tauranga and 79-75 victory in Napier.

The Breakers were underpowered for Saturday's game, losing forward Tom Abercrombie to what the club says is a minor back injury early on.

They were also without veteran swing man Kirk Penney, who suffered a calf strain in Napier, and guard Corey Webster, who has a back niggle.

The Bullets held the hosts at bay after storming to a 23-14 lead after the first quarter. The remaining periods were relatively even as both coaches mixed up their combinations.

Breakers coach Paul Henare says the series served a valuable purpose, regardless of the result.

"Results and injuries aside we have come together well as a group and worked on our identity and coming together as a team," he said.

"On the floor I would have liked more progress, we have made improvements across a couple of areas over the week."

Derone Raukawa led the Breakers scoring with 13 points while fellow-development player Ethan Rusbatch (12) and Mike Vukona (10) were also in double figures.

Matthew Kenyon and Jermaine Beal both scored 13 for Brisbane.

The Breakers open their NBL campaign at home to Melbourne United on October 7.

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