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Long Range Marksmanship Carries London Lightning to 109-97 Victory over Orangeville

February 18, 2017 - National Basketball League of Canada (NBL Canada) - Orangeville A's News Release

LONDON, ON - Back in action after a tough loss to the Windsor Express, the A's found themselves back on the road to face a blazing hot London Lightning team. London, who hasn't lost since January 8th, prepared to get their revenge against the Orangeville team that gave them one of their 3 losses on the season so far. In what looked like a close game in the first minutes highlighted by excellent 3-point shooting for both sides, quickly turned into the Lightning taking advantage of sloppy play on their way to a big victory.

In their early trips on the offensive end, the A's had success with their 3-point shooting and they took an early lead over the Lightning. On the other end, they struggled with closing out perimeter shooters so their long range scoring was quickly countered by the London offense. The Lightning relied heavily on their outside scoring and it paid dividends with Doug Herring Jr. shooting flawlessly (14p, 4-4 3PT FG) from behind the arc, including a half court heave to end the quarter. What was once a 5-point lead for Orangeville, quickly turned to a 27-35 deficit at the end of the 1st.

The 2nd quarter was a more successful one for the A's in terms of the score but wasn't very favorable in terms of overall play. Stefan Nastic (14p. 5-6 FG) became the focus of the Orangeville offense and he was very effective as they transitioned to inside scoring. Not only did he dominate his offensive matchup with his size, but also put his jump shot to good use and scored when the defense decided to sag off. London's defense was very aggressive on other parts of the floor to prevent the ball from making its way down low and they were often successful in creating turnovers to prevent Orangeville from running their offensive sets. Orangeville managed to close the gap to as little as 4-points on multiple occasions but with Doug Herring Jr. (18p, 6-11FG) and Ryan Anderson (12p, 5r) continuing to be factors for the Lightning, the A's were unable to close the gap.

Although the A's outscored London in the 2nd quarter they still trailed 48-55 to begin the second half. The Lightning's hot shooting didn't cool down after the break and they quickly drained two 3-pointers within the first 2 minutes of the 3rd. London kept the pressure and their lead grew to as big as 20 points before the quarter even hit the halfway point. Although the A's continuously hurt themselves with turnovers (22 TOs), forcing their opponents into foul trouble gave them the opportunity to close the deficit down to 11-points in the final minutes of the frame. Unfortunately, that would be as close as they got in the 3rd before the Lightning followed up with an 8-3 run in the final 60 seconds. Junior Cadougan was vital for the Lightning and his 13 points (3-3 3PT FG) came at timely points to keep the A's at bay.

Starting the final quarter trailing 72-88 the A's had a huge mountain to overcome in a single quarter of play and they came out very focused. After London scored their first 4 points, the A's charged back with a 16-2 run when London's shooting went cold. Justin Moss's offense finally got going late and his double-double (20p, 10r) contribution was a key factor in cutting the deficit to 7 points in the final 5 minutes. With the time left on the clock and the momentum finally shifting, the A's were poised to make an unlikely last minute comeback. Unfortunately, it was at that point that the turnover issues that plagued Orangeville throughout the game made another appearance and London converted 3 consecutive turnovers into 6 points on the way to an 8-0 run. Without enough time or energy to cause another shift in momentum, the Lightning held on to their lead and closed the game out at 109-97.

By the numbers:

Turnovers: The A's gave the ball away a whopping 29 times which the Lightning turned into 35 points.

Perimeter Defense: The Lightning scored 15 3-pointers, most coming from Doug Herring Jr. (27p, 5-8 3PT)

Free Throw Woes: Orangeville struggled from the line, only scoring 69% of their attempts (16-23)

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