Richard Kirklin Averages 7.5 Points, 6.5 Rebounds In Final Two Games Of New Zealand Tour

June 4, 2001

HAMILTON and AUCKLAND, New Zealand - Richard Kirklin, a rising junior on the Ole Miss men's basketball team, averaged 7.5 points and 6.5 rebounds in the final two games of Planet Basketball's New Zealand Tour. The squad completed its six-game trip with a 3-3 record.

In the team's fifth game, the Pine Bluff, Ark., native had eight points and seven boards in a 96-89 loss to the Waikoto Titans, the first-place team in the New Zealand Basketball League. With their win over Planet Basketball, the Titans remained undefeated this year.

Leading 67-64 in the third quarter, the Titans went on a 21-10 run to take a commanding 88-74 advantage with 2:30 left in the game. Planet Basketball rallied to within six, but could not complete the comeback after Chris Hyppa of St. Martin's and David Adams fouled out.

Washington State's J Locklier, the 2001 Pacific-10 Conference Newcomer of the Year, led all scorers with 36 points and added seven rebounds.

"It was an exciting basketball game," Planet Basketball Head Coach Chris Croft said. "We lost our intensity in the third period and let them extend the lead. We made a great comeback, but we did not have enough energy in the end."

Adams finished with 14 points, as did Kendall Regis of Louisiana-Lafayette. Regis added 10 rebounds for a double-double. Hyppa chipped in seven points.

In the final game of the tour, Kirklin had seven points and six rebounds to help lead Planet Basketball to a 102-87 victory over the North Harbour Kings. The game was the fourth in four days for the Americans.

Adams led Planet Basketball with 30 points, including 5-for-11 shooting from three-point range, and Locklier added his fifth double-double of the tour with 26 points and 10 rebounds.

Planet Basketball led 75-69 after three periods before pulling away in the fourth quarter. Washington State's Cedric Clark scored 11 points and dished out a team-high six assists, and Regis recorded his second straight double-double with 10 points and a team-high 11 boards.

"We did a great job coming out focused," Croft said. "It was a total team effort. We had a great trip on and off the court, and it was nice to end on a positive note. It was a very rewarding experience."

Jason Berry of Whitman and Hyppa each contributed eight points in the victory.

 

 

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