Drive Fall to Knicks in OT
GRAND RAPIDS - The Westchester Knicks (14-5) escaped with a 119-117 overtime win over the Grand Rapids Drive (7-10) on the road Saturday night. The Knicks were up 15 points at the end of the first quarter and held on around that margin for most of the game, but the Drive came back in the fourth quarter and forced overtime. Kadeem Allen hit a clutch floater for the Knicks with three seconds left to put them up two, and the Drive missed the ensuing attempts at a game-tying layup or follow.
John Jenkins poured in 40 points to lead the Knicks, hitting six three-pointers and scoring 30 points in just the first and third quarters combined. Allen finished with 15 points and eight rebounds. The Knicks also got a great performance from their bench, as Trevon Bluiett, Billy Garrett, Stephen Zimmerman and Gyorgy Golomon each reached double figures off the bench. Blueitt also had eight rebounds.
Speedy Smith continued his excellent three-game stretch for the Drive with 24 points and 12 assists, both of which led the team. Todd Withers had a breakout performance for the Drive, tripling his season high with 21 points and going 6-of-9 from three-point range after starting the year just 3-of-35 from deep. Michael Bethea Jr. added 16 points and seven rebounds off the bench, and Johnny Hamilton had his fifth double-double in a row with 14 points and 11 rebounds.
The Drive out-performed their opponents both from the field and from three-point range, but the Knicks were able to make up most of that with an incredible team performance from the free throw line. They took 34 free throw attempts and missed just one. Allen was the Knicks' least accurate shooter from the line, and he went 9-of-10.
The free throw shooting by the Knicks was completely essential in the final minute as well, as the Knicks' last six points all came from the line as the Drive missed their final three shots after leading by four with just over a minute left. Garrett grabbed a crucial rebound in the final seconds, the Drive were controversially called for a foul, and Garrett was able to knock down both free throws and send the game to overtime, where the Drive fell to 0-2 this season in extra time.
Both teams will next head to the G League Showcase in Las Vegas and play their opening games on Dec. 19. The Drive play the Agua Caliente Clippers at 9 p.m. Eastern time and the Knicks will square off with the Iowa Wolves at 6:30.
Speedy Smith (24pts, 12ast & 2stl) >>> https://bit.ly/2QXIoYe
Todd Withers (21pts & 6reb) >>> https://bit.ly/2SROIxt
Michael Bethea Jr. (16pts, 7reb & 2stl) >>> https://bit.ly/2BldBuC
Johnny Hamilton (14pts, 11reb & 3blk) >>> https://bit.ly/2Bp8bi0
Keenan Evans (13pts, 8 ast & 5reb) >>> https://bit.ly/2SROJBx
Marcus Thornton (12pts & 6reb) >>> https://bit.ly/2S4Vkso
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