Late Bucket Gives Sioux Falls Skyforce Road Win over OKC Blue
Another tight game on the road and the Sioux Falls Skyforce found a way to hang on against Oklahoma City 121-119 on Wednesday night.
In the first meeting between the two teams this season, it shaped up as a battle for the Midwest division lead as both teams hovering around the .500 mark at this point of the season.
Sioux Falls (7-7) had to endure a wild final minute to hold off the Blue (8-8) after leading for much of the night including by 20 late in the third quarter. A Skyforce turnover with a four-point lead and 33 seconds remaining set up a big possession for the Blue.
An offensive rebound by Rashawn Thomas and the ensuing putback cut the lead to two with a chance to make it a one-point game at the line. Thomas missed the free throw, but P.J. Dozier got the rebound, was fouled and hit two tosses to tie it with 13.5 seconds remaining.
Sioux Falls got the look they wanted from the outside as Matt Williams, Jr. let fly from deep. The aim was off, but Tony Mitchell took the air-ball and dropped it through with 1.1 seconds on the clock.
The Blue’s inbound play was well-designed with a lob to the bucket as one man cut back door. However the pass went directly into the basket without ever being touched by another player, which is an inbounding violation, handing the ball back to Sioux Falls who simply inbounded properly to end the game.
Along with the game winner, Mitchell had a 15-point second quarter en route to a game-high 32 points, 8 rebounds and 4 steals for the ‘Force. Torrey Craig was also a heavy contributor with 29 points and 13 boards while Derrick Walton, Jr. scored a double-double of 12 points and 10 assists.
Three of the Blue had exactly 18 points including the aforementioned Thomas and Dozier. Myke Henry had 23 points and 11 rebounds with Markel Brown adding 21 points to lead Oklahoma City.
Next up for the Skyforce is their first ever meeting with the expansion Wisconsin Herd on Friday night in Oshkosh. On the same night, Oklahoma City will make a quick trip to the Metroplex to face the Texas Legends.