In another fourth quarter showdown, Sioux Falls had a pair of aces. However Fort Wayne had the wild card as the Mad Ants stormed back to nip the Skyforce 131-130 on Friday night at Allen County War Memorial Coliseum.

Hot shooting in the first quarter propelled the Skyforce (14-15) to a 14-point lead after the first 12 minutes. The visitors missed only 6 of their first 23 shots while the Mad Ants (16-12) only made 8 of 25 from the floor.

The lead ballooned to 21 during the second quarter, but from there Fort Wayne steadily worked back to all square by the middle of the fourth quarter. Sioux Falls temporarily held off the Mad Ants until a Walter Lemon, Jr. (a.k.a. the wild card) layup with 3:51 left to make it 121-120.

Seven times the lead changed hands and six times the game was tied in the final 7 minutes. The Skyforce’s aces (Kadeem Jack and Tony Mitchell) each scored buckets late to pry the lead away, but a whistle with 1.9 seconds left put Trey McKinney-Jones at the line with the game on the line. McKinney-Jones converted to put the final point on the board.

In that fourth quarter alone, Lemon, Jr. scored 15 of his 26 points and Jarrod Uthoff scored 6 of his 28 points in the final frame to lead the Mad Ants. Ben Moore and assembled a double-double for Fort Wayne with 10 points and 12 rebounds.

Of the 27 points Sioux Falls posted in the fourth, Jack scored 13 and Tony Mitchell 10. Both came off the bench to lead the ‘Force with Mitchell converting 33 for the game and Jack’s double-double consisted of 28 points and 10 rebounds.

Sioux Falls will have a quick turnaround with a date tonight (Saturday) at the Canton Charge. Fort Wayne goes north to meet Raptors 905 on Monday.

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