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Break does Cats no good at all
Matt Knight. Pic: Getty Images

Maybe the week off in round four wasn't all it was cracked up to be.

A heavy travel schedule took its toll on the Perth Wildcats over the opening three rounds of the season and they welcomed the bye as a chance to rest and recuperate.

But rather than look like a team that was refreshed and ready to extend an unbeaten start, the Wildcats were spectators as Wollongong put on a show in yesterday's top-of-the-table clash at the WIN Entertainment Centre.

The Hawks shot at 76 per cent in the first quarter and opened up a 24-point lead inside the first eight minutes before coasting to a 100-67 win.

It was the Wildcats' heaviest defeat since Rob Beveridge took over as coach in 2009, but just their third by more than 20 points, all of which have come against the Hawks.

The Wildcats have now lost five of seven games in Wollongong during that period by an average of 21 points.

Yesterday's game was delayed by 20 minutes when the stadium's new scoreboard and shot clock mal- functioned.

The game was played without an operational scoreboard and the courtside announcer had to count down the final 10 seconds of each possession, causing much embarrassment to NBL officials.

Beveridge admitted his players let the delay affect them, but wouldn't blame it for the defeat.

"We started off with mistakes early and that was the catalyst for the rest of the game," Beveridge said.

"Wollongong just put on a clinic and everything they did was just top notch.

"We've been the best defensive team for many years and for us to put that sort of performance on is extremely disappointing.

"I've taken it to heart and the guys have taken it to heart as well."

Try as the they might, the Wildcats couldn't close the gap after quarter time.

Jesse Wagstaff started well off the bench but drifted out of the contest and fouled out well before the end.

Matt Knight had the biggest impact for the visitors with 18 points and five rebounds, but top shooter Kevin Lisch only had six attempts.

"Some people probably shot the ball too much and it's our responsibility to get Kev open through better screening," Beveridge said.

"He needs to get himself involved a lot more as well."

Dominican guard Adris Deleon - who played for defunct Gold Coast last season - was outstanding for Wollongong with 26 points at 73 per cent. Oscar Forman scored 21 points, including five triples.

Wollongong general manager Mili Simic said he would seek answers over the malfunctioning scoring system from Venues NSW this week.

"It's not the standard that we want to see and we expect this to never happen again," Simic said.

"From a club perspective we're just embarrassed that it happened in this venue."

In yesterday's other games, Adelaide moved into the top four with an 88-81 road win over Sydney and Melbourne recorded their first win of the season with a 91-66 thrashing of Townsville at home.

The manner of their defeat poured more pressure on the winless Crocs (0-7) and coach Paul Woolpert.

STANDINGS P W L P% W% Wollongong 5 5 0 123 100 New Zealand 5 4 1 102 80 Perth 4 3 1 107 75 Adelaide 5 3 2 101 60 Cairns 6 3 3 106 50 Sydney 7 3 4 95 42 Melbourne 5 1 4 94 20 Townsville 7 0 7 83 0