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A's Unable to Slow Down the River Lions at Home

February 6, 2016 - National Basketball League of Canada (NBL Canada) - Orangeville A's News Release

After an incredible buzzer beating victory on Friday, the A's played host to the River Lions on the tail end of a back-to-back at home. Last night's win over the Express vaulted the Orangeville A's (5-6) to 2nd place in the Central division, with the Niagara River Lions (4-11) sitting at 4th place. Orangeville is riding the momentum of two straight victories that were propelled by game winning shots by A's guard, Rick Bodiford over the Miracles and Express. Orangeville has defeated Niagara in both of their previous contests (108-105 @ Niagara, and 97-90 @ Orangeville) and hopes to gain some ground in the Central division NBLC race, currently being dominated by the London Lightning (13-3). The A's entered tonight's game with one of the strongest defenses in the NBLC, ranking #1 for opponent's FG% (43.7%) and #2 for opponents' 3-PT FG % (33.0%).

Orangeville had trouble slowing down the River Lions out of the gate, after Niagara took a 3 point lead with 7:45 to play in the 1st quarter, 12-9. The A's managed to find their defensive rhythm early on, pulling ahead to a 4 point lead with 6:01 to play in the quarter, 18-14. Orangeville provided a well-balanced offensive effort, with Flen Whitfield and Justin Moss combining for 18 points throughout the quarter. The A's had a strong defensive effort, forcing 5 steals and 6 turnovers as a team. Orangeville finished the quarter with a 7 point lead, 30-23.

The River Lions came out strong in the 2nd quarter. They were able to cut the A's lead to as little as 3 points with 9:42 remaining in the half, 32-29. Niagara guard Tramar Sutherland had an efficient quarter for the River Lions, dropping 10 points on a perfect 3/3 shooting. Niagara continued to chip away as they brought the A's lead to a single point with 7:06 to play in the 2nd quarter, 34-33. Orangeville continued to dominate their rebounding efforts against opponents, grabbing 28 boards in the half over Niagara's 24. The A's managed to pull ahead of the River Lions by 6 points with 3:23 to play in the quarter, 42-36. Just before halftime, the River Lions trimmed the A's lead to only 2 points, 44-42.

The A's continued to trade leads with the River Lions throughout the 3rd quarter, before taking a small lead of 5 points with 5:32 to play in the quarter. Orangeville continued to tap the offensive efforts of Whitfield and Moss, who combined for a massive 16 points and 10 rebounds as a tandem during the 3rd quarter. The 3rd quarter ended with only a single point Orangeville lead, 74-73.

The start of the 4th quarter continued to be a close battle between the two squads, with both teams remaining tied at 76-76 for almost two minutes. The two teams traded leads several more times throughout the game, matching each other's score at 82-82 with 4:35 to play in the game. Tramar Sutherland continued to rain shots down on the A's defense, notching a total of 18 points to finish the game. The A's put on a lack luster shooting outing tonight after 48 minutes, hitting only 39% from the field and 16% from 3-Pt. Orangeville finished the game with a 3 point deficit (93-90) after they were unable to hit what would have been a game-tieing 3-pointer put up by Richard Amardi. The A's next game will be on the road on Thursday, February 11th against the Windsor Express, as they head to the WFCU Centre, looking to improve to 5-7 on the season.

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Images from this story

Bilal Benn of the Orangeville A's Handles the Ball against the Niagara River Lions
Bilal Benn of the Orangeville A's Handles the Ball against the Niagara River Lions


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National Basketball League of Canada Stories from February 6, 2016

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