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Breakers using loss as motivation

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 20/11/2016

New Zealand Breakers sharpshooter Kirk Penney believes Sunday's 109-78 thrashing from the Illawarra Hawks will prompt an angry and immediate response from his side.Just two days after cruising to a 100-85 home win over Illawarra, the Breakers failed to emulate the five-star performance, losing by more than double that margin in the return clash at Wollongong.New Zealand slipped two spots to fourth on the NBL table after the loss and face the Cairns Taipans in north Queensland on Sunday.The hot and cold Hawks are fifth on the ladder and head west in round eight for a Sunday afternoon duel with reigning champions Perth.Two-time Olympian Penney said the heavy beating from his former team could be a springboard to greater glory."It's one of those games that sometimes happens, but you get a good kick up the butt and you get really pissed off and you respond," Penney said."It's probably a growth game for us. We're going to have to go back and see what we can do better."The Hawks made some good adjustments and we didn't handle it well. They were a different team than they were in Auckland. They really found their confidence and we're annoyed we let them have it.Illawarra coach Rob Beveridge made two key changes to his starting five, promoting Kevin White and Cody Ellis in place of Rotnei Clarke and Nick Kay.The move worked, with Clarke and Kay combining for 39 points off the bench."I'm hoping tonight set a bar for us, hoping that it could be a turning point for us," Beveridge said."When we play good disruptive defence it makes things flow for us and we don't have to get into a half-court grind."Hawks import Marvelle Harris left the game early with an ankle injury but Beveridge expects him to play against Perth.

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