Townsville Crocodiles ready to scale heights at home

TOWNSVILLE might be six wins behind fierce NBL rival Cairns, but the Crocodiles will be confident they can push the Taipans in the Reptile Rumble, in Townsville tomorrow.

The second-last placed Crocs posted an impressive victory over Sydney on New Year's Eve, thanks largely to a career-high 21 points from young point guard Mitch Norton (pictured).

It was the third consecutive home victory for the men in green.

Norton, a Townsville junior, was terrific in shooting at 70% while connecting on some big three-pointers.

American import Brian Conklin also scored 21, and veteran guard Steve Markovic provided his usual spark off the bench en route to 16 points and six assists.

Since Cairns' impressive 83-59 win over league leaders the NZ Breakers, the Taipans just held out the last-placed Wollongong 100-93, and lost 84-77 to Adelaide on New Year's Eve.

Boomers star Brock Motum, recently cut by the NBA's Utah Jazz, starred for the 36ers in that game with 27 points, hitting eight from 10 field goals.

Crocs coach Shawn Dennis has high standards in place despite his team's lowly position.

"I'm not happy that we gave up 92 points on 56% shooting. This is a game that we should have won quite easily on the scoreboard in my mind," he said.

In other games this round, the Kings will host Melbourne United at the Sydney Entertainment tonight, and New Zealand will travel to take on the in-form Adelaide 36ers on Sunday.

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