Greensboro Swarm Bring Home a Big Win
(GREENSBORO, NC)- The Greensboro Swarm, the NBA G League affiliate of the Charlotte Hornets, held a formal ribbon cutting to commemorate the completion of the rebranding of the Novant Health Fieldhouse at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex prior to the night's 123-120 win over the Maine Celtics (Boston Celtics affiliate). Maine entered tonight's match-up with the second-best record in the league. Greensboro handed Maine the team's third loss of the season.
In a back and forth first half, the Celtics and Swarm traded the lead six times, which at once saw Maine jump out to a 15-point lead in the first quarter. However, Greensboro rallied back at the end of the first frame to cut the lead to just three points. Both teams headed into the halftime break in a dead heat of 65 points each.
During the second half, the Swarm were led by the scoring duo of Jalen Crutcher and Kobi Simmons, who combined for 31 points in the third and fourth quarters. Crutcher would go on to record a game-high 31 points and was an impressive 50 percent from beyond the arc. This was his second game in a row with 30-plus points. Following in close pursuit, Simmons ended the night with 28 points, his seventh game with 20-plus points, on 10-of-18 shooting from the field in 44 minutes.
In the fourth quarter, Greensboro's 7-2 run gave them a 101-93 lead early in the period, and an above-the-break three from Crutcher made it 104-97 and forced Maine into a timeout with just over nine minutes to go. The Celtics closed the Swarm's lead to within one point in the final seconds of the contest. However, late-game free throws from Greensboro's JT Thor sealed the victory for the Swarm.
Greensboro saw four players in addition to Crutcher and Simmons with double-digit point performances: Anthony Duruji (16), Ashton Hagans (13), Thor (12) and Mark Williams (12). Williams, the NBA G League's leading rebounder, added seven rebounds and four assists in 19 minutes. Hagans picked up the Swarm's lone double-double with 10 assists to go with his 13 points.
Maine was led by Luka Samanic, the reigning NBA G League Player of the Month, who scored 31 points. The Celtics had five additional players with 10-plus points: Marvin Smith (22), Denzel Valentine (18), Kamar Baldwin (13) and JD Davison (13). Valentine led all rebounders with 16 boards.
The Swarm will be back on the road against Raptors 905 (Toronto Raptors affiliate) in back-to-back games on December 5 and 6.
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