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Four move on in PBL playoffs

March 19, 2008 - Premier Basketball League (PBL) News Release

Eight teams battled for four places in the Premier Basketball League's first-ever playoff tournament, held Tuesday, March 18 at Attack Athletics in Chicago. With every playoff position on the line, each team knew that all it took was the following - win tonight, you play tomorrow; lose tonight, the season ends when the clock runs out.

In the first game of the PBL's quadruple-header, the Rockford Fury battled Dallas in a game that was filled with playoff intensity throughout. Dallas took the initial lead in he first quarter 33-25, but the Fury battled back - and buoyed by many of its fans, who traveled from Rockford to watch their pro squad, the Fury triumphed with a 121-108 victory over Dallas. Rashi Johnson's 32 points led Rockford in scoring; Johnson's points included four 3-pointers and a 12-for-18 run from the floor. Frank Richards added 20 points for Rockford. Reggie George led the Fury in rebounds, pulling down eight boards. For Dallas, Tyrone Rayson scored 27 points and 8 rebounds; Andre Heard and Mario Kinsey each finished with 21 points apiece.

Rockford's win advances them to Wednesday's quarterfinals, where the Fury will face the Arkansas Impact. The Impact slid by the Chicago Throwbacks 115-102, as Jeremy Bell's 29 points included a perfect 8-for-8 from the free throw line. Ryan Holmes and Tyrone Davis finished with 20 and 19 points, respectively; Davis also finished with 8 rebounds and two blocked shots. Jimmie Miles was the top scorer for the Chicago Throwbacks, with 29 points on the night; Aaron Carr had 21 points, while Sherell Ford had a double-double of 17 points and 11 rebounds.

The Reading Railers and the Jacksonville Slam challenged each other to a three-point shooting contest in their playoff matchup; both teams combined for 33 3-pointers, with Reading out-shooting the Slam from the 3-point line, 17 treys to 16. The Railers won the matchup 135-119, as Jared Mills' 25 points included four treys; Tayron Thomas finished with 23 points; Lennox McCoy scored 18. Aaron Williams had a double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds. For Jacksonville, PBL Player of the Week Anthony Lumpkin was the high scorer for the Slam, finishing with 34 points and 6 assists; Golden Ingle's 26 points were augmented with 5 3-pointers; Antonio Lawrence put up 22 points for Jacksonville.

The Railers will face off Wednesday against the Maryland Nighthawks, who pulled the night's only upset with a 125-112 victory over the Wilmington Sea Dawgs. Seven of the eight Nighthawks scored double figures, with Omar Weaver's 26 points leading the way for Maryland. Tyrone Hammond's 22 points included a 9-for-10 run from the floor; David Bailey's 18 points were augmented with 9 rebounds. Byron Mouton's 29 points were the high-water mark for Wilmington; Charles Ward finished with 20 points and 8 rebounds, while Jermaine Williams and Jason Pryor finished with 18 and 17 points, respectively.

The winner of the Rockford-Arkansas game will immediately travel to face the Quad Cities Riverhawks at Black Hawk College in Moline, Illinois on Thursday, while the Reading-Maryland victor will take on the Rochesther Razorsharks at Blue Cross Arena on Thursday evening. The Eastern Division champion will play against the Western Division champion on Sunday, March 30 at a site to be determined.

Courtesy of Chuck Miller

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