Randle stars as Sixers rise above Phoenix

Steve Barrett
Jerome Randle (R) scored a game-high 35 points in Adelaide's win over the Phoenix

Jerome Randle has helped the Adelaide 36ers shake off a second-quarter slumber and snap a three-game losing skid by defeating South East Melbourne Phoenix 100-93 at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre.

Well below his best in Friday's landslide loss in New Zealand, Randle bounced back with 35 points.

Daniel Johnson (17 points) stepped up in the fourth to help Randle carry the Sixers across the line and keep their ever-so-faint finals hopes alive.

"I thought our guys came out ready and executed really well in the first quarter defensively," 36ers coach Joey Wright said.

"We were right there making them take tough shots.

"I thought it was a great defensive effort starting off and the guys got out and made plays throughout the game."

Mitch Creek (27 points, 10 rebounds) was typically lion-hearted while import John Roberson scored 26 points, all in the second half for the Phoenix who suffered their fifth successive loss.

Creek was electric early with 12 first-quarter points but Randle was better, rattling off 14 to put Adelaide in firm control.

Randle spearheaded a 9-0 burst amid an overall 22-6 run of dominance to push the Sixers ahead 32-19 at quarter-time before a second-term slumber allowed Phoenix right back into the game.

In barely two minutes, Phoenix uncorked a 14-0 flurry to suddenly tie the game before the 36ers, in yet another wild fluctuation in momentum, recaptured the initiative and led 54-46 on Jack McVeigh's halftime buzzer-beater.

Roberson broke his duck with 10 third-quarter points, which combined with some ragged Adelaide shooting to help the visitors close the deficit to 71-69 at three-quarter-time.

Roberson's three-pointer early in the fourth gave South East Melbourne the lead while his next trey sparked an 8-0 run.

But it was the 36ers who held their nerve in the clutch with Randle sparking the comeback. Johnson's three-point tagger with 45 seconds remaining allied with some calm free-throw shooting helped Adelaide home.

"We had to hit first, get aggressive and make sure we kept bodies off the offensive boards but they just busted our arse in the first quarter," Phoenix coach Simon Mitchell lamented.

"That set the tone which put us on the back foot and our composure down the stretch I thought was lacking."