Charge Drop Regular Season Home Finale
The Canton Charge (30-19), presented by SecureData 365 and powered by the Cleveland Cavaliers, fell in their regular season home finale to the Iowa Energy (26-23), 103-92. Canton will be back home at the Memorial Civic Center next week to host the Sioux Falls Skyforce in Game 1 of the opening round of the NBA Development League Playoffs, with dates and times to be finalized Sunday afternoon.
Canton's crowd of 4,119 tonight set a new franchise record for most fans at a single game, surpassing the mark of 4,032 set on Cavs Night earlier this season (1/31). The team also set a new single season attendance mark, with 72,345 fans making their way to the Civic Center (3,014 per game; 3,942 building capacity) throughout the 2014-15 campaign.
Iowa came out blazing hot on offense, hitting 14-of-18 shots in the first (78%) and Damien Wilkins scoring 14 of the team's 35 first quarter points. Canton trailed 35-23 after the opening period, with Stephen Holt contributing 10 on a perfect 4-for-4 from the floor.
The Energy kept their foot on the gas and built their lead up to as many as 22 in the latter stages of the opening half. Down 55-33 and 3:56 left in the half, the Charge battled to outscore the visitors 9-3 to close out the second, with three baskets from Maurice Kemp off the bench. The visitors held a 58-42 advantage at intermission.
Down 67-47 early in the third, Canton continued to claw their way back in the game. The hosts outscored Iowa 21-8 to cut the game to single digits for the first time since the 3:03 mark in the first quarter, 75-68. The Energy bounced back by hitting their next three shots on a 6-2 run to close the third and pad their lead to 81-70 heading into the fourth.
Iowa's strong offensive performance proved to be too much for Canton to come back from, as they held a double-digit lead for the entire fourth quarter. The two teams will end the season series 2-2, with the visiting team winning each meeting. The Energy are jockeying for position with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants for the final Wild Card playoff spot, with their playoff hopes now coming down to the final game of the season.
Arinze Onuaku posted his 30th double-double of the season with 19 points on 8-of-10 shooting, 11 rebounds, and one block in 35 minutes. Stephen Holt scored 15 points on 5-of-8 shooting with six assists, and two steals in 33 minutes. Chris Crawford came off the bench to add 14 points and six rebounds in 29 minutes. The Charge as a team dished 21 assists on 35 field goals tonight.
Wilkins finished with a season-high 39 points on 16-of-21 shooting and five boards, never coming off the floor for all 48 minutes of the game. Willie Reed added a double-double of 21 points and 11 rebounds with two blocks in 37 minutes. Marcus Hall contributed 15 points, seven rebounds, and six assists in 45 minutes. Iowa as a team finished the night hitting 41-of-70 shots (57%), the highest field goal percentage of any Canton opponent this season.
Canton caps off the 2014-15 regular season campaign on the road tomorrow, April 4th at 7:00 p.m. against the Westchester Knicks (New York Knicks affiliate)! Tickets to the Charge's opening round playoff home game against the Sioux Falls Skyforce (Miami Heat affiliate) start at $8 and are on sale now! Fans can get their tickets to see Canton's postseason run from the start by calling the Charge office at 1-866-444-1944, at Ticketmaster outlets or at www.CantonCharge.com.
Secure your seats today for our historic fifth season! A deposit of only $50 reserves the best seats to catch all the excitement of the 2015-16 season as well as membership benefits that start immediately. Receive five games on us, Monsters or Gladiators tickets, an exclusive Cavs event in Canton, and more! For Charge Nation Memberships, game day promotions and up-to-date information, head to www.CantonCharge.com or call 866-444-1944.
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