Hustle Top Blue Coats in Single-Site Season Finale
Kissimmee, Fla. - The Memphis Hustle, the Grizzlies' NBA G League affiliate, defeated the Delaware Blue Coats 106-95 inside AdventHealth Arena on Saturday afternoon in their single-site season finale.
The first quarter saw six lead changes in a fast-paced, back-and-forth start to the game. The Blue Coats led by as many as six points early on (28-22) before Memphis cut the lead to 32-28 heading to the second quarter. Freddie Gillespie tallied eight points in the first seven minutes of the game to pace the Hustle early on. Delaware quickly ripped off an 8-0 run to extend their lead to 54-46 with 2:44 to play before half. However, the Hustle went on to score 14 of the final 16 points in the quarter to give Memphis a 60-56 lead heading into the halftime break. Memphis struggled shooting in the first half, but they caused havoc on the defensive end, forcing 12 Delaware turnovers leading to 22 points on the offensive end. Grizzlies two-way Sean McDermott had the hot hand in the first half, finishing with 16 points on 6-of-10 shooting.
The Hustle put together a strong 12 minutes on the defensive end in the third quarter, limiting the Blue Coats to just 37.5 percent from the floor and 10 percent from 3-point range. Memphis shot just 33.3 percent themselves while clinging to an 86-80 lead heading into the fourth quarter. The Hustle led 90-80 with 9:24 remaining in the game following an acrobatic finish at the rim from Ahmad Caver. Delaware cut the lead to six points with 1:17 following three free-throws from Rayjon Tucker, but the Blue Coats would not get any closer than six points, as Memphis put together their best defensive quarter of the season. The Hustle limited the Blue Coats to 15 fourth-quarter points and forced 11 turnovers to ice the game away. With the win, Memphis capped off their season with three wins in their final four games.
McDermott totaled 23 points (9-of-17 FG, 5-9 3P) to go with four rebounds and one assist in 29 minutes to lead the Hustle. Gillespie posted 14 points, eight rebounds and two blocks in 30 minutes. Ahmad Caver added 15 points, five rebounds and five assists in 30 minutes off the bench. Shaq Buchanan totaled 12 points, five rebounds and two steals as Memphis improved to (6-9).
Paul Reed posted a double-double with a game-high 27 points, 16 rebounds and six assists on 12-of-19 shooting for the Blue Coats. Rayjon Tucker totaled 20 points, three assists and one rebound in 32 minutes. Jordan Bone pitched in 11 points, four assists and five rebounds in 28 minutes.
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