Heuir takes lead in bat­tle of the ti­tans

The Cairns Post - - SPORT - JOR­DAN GERRANS jor­dan.gerrans@news.com.au

IT WAS billed as Cairns against Lo­gan but it turned into Da­mon Heuir against Michael Cedar.

The QBL clubs at Cairns’ Fish Tank on Fri­day night were only go­ing to go as far as their star shoot­ing guards took them and, thank­fully for the Mar­lins, Heuir won the per­sonal bat­tle and de­liv­ered a chance to gain a home fi­nal.

Heuir and Cedar were the only two play­ers on the court to score more than 20 points, as they went head to head for near on four quar­ters.

Cedar, the Lo­gan Thun­der cap­tain and for­mer Townsville Croc­o­dile, started the hot­ter of the pair as the vis­i­tors skipped out to an early lead on the back of his sweet stroke.

The silky guard had his out­side game go­ing as well as mak­ing tough jumpers in traf­fic as Lo­gan took a 12-point ad­van­tage into the long break.

Mar­lins coach Jamie Pearl­man was left frus­trated with their de­fen­sive in­tent in the open­ing half.

Their de­fence picked up in the fi­nal two terms, so did the in­flu­ence of the hosts co-cap­tain, as they drew level late in the third term be­fore putting away Lo­gan in the fi­nal term.

Heuir shot at a ridicu­lous 77 per cent from be­hind the three point arc as he fin­ished with 34 points and six as­sists in a match­win­ning per­for­mance.

“Damo was be­ing that scorer for us as well as tak­ing on that de­fen­sive re­spon­si­bil­ity at the other end,” Pearl­man said.

“I con­tinue to ask him to do that job and he has done it time and time again for us. It was a fan­tas­tic con­test to watch and Michael Cedar is hav­ing his best sea­son in a num­ber of years.”

Fel­low co-cap­tain, Aaron Bin Ta­hal, was also bril­liant, hand­ing out seven as­sists in just un­der 15 min­utes as well as pres­sur­ing the Thun­der’s guards.

Pearl­man was pleased to hold Lo­gan to just 34 points in the sec­ond half.

“I was re­ally happy with our de­fen­sive ef­fort in the sec­ond half, that is where it needs to be and our de­fence cre­ated more of­fence,” Pearl­man said. “That is the more fi­nals bas­ket­ball style. We need to get 40 min­utes of that kind of ef­fort.”

The Mar­lins are as­sured of a spot in the fi­nals but must fin­ish the reg­u­lar sea­son with two wins to se­cure home­court ad­van­tage for the first round of the play­offs.

Pearl­man is con­fi­dent point guard Jar­rad Weeks will be fit for the fi­nal round of the sea­son and play­offs af­ter miss­ing the win over Lo­gan.

Pic­ture: BREN­DAN RADKE

DUAL ROLE: Mar­lins' Da­mon Heuir makes a break in the Queens­land Bas­ket­ball League match be­tween the Cairns Mar­lins and the Lo­gan Thun­der, in Ma­nunda on Fri­day.

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