Wildcats ring in 2019 with win over Cairns

Perth rang in the new year by snapping a four-game losing streak in Cairns, defeating the bottom-placed Taipans 93-78 in their NBL clash.

The Wildcats went into the match without MVP contender Bryce Cotton and were under the pump to maintain their position in the NBL's top two after losses to Illawarra, Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney.

Apart from a short period in the third term, the Trevor Gleeson-coached side cruised to victory.

The Wildcats led by as much as 13 in the second quarter and by eight at the break.

The Snakes reduced the deficit to two points midway through the third period and seemingly had the momentum, but were unable to keep it rolling.

A three-pointer from Mitch Norton sucked the life out of the packed crowd at the Cairns Convention Centre and the home side were unable to be resuscitated.

Regular turnovers from the Taipans killed their chances of ending their losing streak, which now stands at 14.

With Cotton nursing a hamstring injury in Perth, the Wildcats shared the load, with Terrico White leading the scoring with 20 points and five assists.

Nick Kay (17), Jesse Wagstaff (14), Clint Steindl (13) and Morton (11) also scored double figures.

Boomers big man Nate Jawai was Cairns' best in the 12 minutes he played, scoring 12 points. He appeared to be struggling with a knee injury late in the second term.

Taipans captain and former Perth forward Lucas Walker produced his best game for the season, finishing with 12 points and six rebounds, while skipper Alex Loughton also tried to inspire off the bench, hitting 12 points of his own.

Imports Melo Trimble (14), DJ Newbill (13) and Devon Hall (12) were well down on their usual output for the Snakes.