Aggression key to finals charge, says Martin

BASKETBALL

Wollongong offensive general Rhys Martin believes greater aggression is the key to a belated finals charge as the Hawks look for consecutive wins for just the second time this season against Townsville tomorrow.

The Hawks [at 7-13] are the NBL's Jekyll and Hyde side so far this year - they mixed a thrilling overtime win over league leaders Perth in round 12 and last week's 102-80 thrashing of Adelaide with a host of disappointing losses.

The Hawks produced a shooting clinic against Adelaide in contrast to the bulk of their season as they outgunned a slick 36rs outfit up the court.

The Hawks also benefited from greater aggression at the basket, with Kevin Tiggs (17), Tim Coenraad (14), Tyson Demos (13), Larry Davidson (14) and Dave Gruber (12) all reaching double figures.

Martin said the new forceful approach could bridge the large gap between the Hawks' best and worst performances.

"We looked at doing that [being aggressive].

"We practised all week with guys playing up tempo and having a lot of confidence in shooting the ball," he said.

"We had a good first quarter and from there it was a free and easy game and we were able to just flow.

"Adelaide's the type of team that like to run and gun with you.

"They didn't have a lot of good shooting guys that night and we got up on them," Martin said.

"We did a good job of limiting them to one shot and after that we just got the ball in the right places.

"We've got to maintain that aggression," he said.

"We had guys who were always trying to get to the rim and then bring the shooters in where, in other games, we've gone a bit placid and taken a backward step."

The Hawks shot an impressive 15 of 36 from three-point range, nine of them in the first half.

Martin admitted his side's fortunes will continue to rest heavily on their all or nothing perimeter shooting game.

"It's the old saying, you live by the side you die by the sword," he said.

"We shoot a lot of threes as a team - sometimes they go in and sometimes they don't.

"The other night [against Adelaide] we made 15 of 36 so that's a good clip and a lot of those we missed at the end of the game when we were up by 25 points.

"Once a couple of guys knock some shots down they get on a roll and then other guys come into the game with not so much pressure on them," he said.

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