Skyforce Comeback Bid Falls Short to Charge, 115-111
SIOUX FALLS, SD - The Sioux Falls Skyforce dropped a 115-111 decision to the Cleveland Charge on Saturday evening at the Sanford Pentagon in the team's third of a six game homestand.
Six Skyforce (1-4) players were in double-figures tonight, which is the first time five-or-more players have scored in double-figures this season. Ja'Vonte Smart (25 points on 9-17 FGA) led the team in scoring in back-to-back outings and has posted 18-or-more points in his last four games.
The trio of Malik Newman (24 points on 10-12 FGA, six assists and six rebounds), Cleveland Cavaliers two-way player Tacko Fall (22 points on 10-10 FGA and 11 rebounds) and Tre Scott (20 points on 7-11 FGA and five rebounds) combined to shoot 82-percent from the field (27-33 FGA) in the contest for the Charge (3-4).
Despite trailing 7-13 at the seven-minute mark in the first quarter, the Skyforce were able to respond with a 23-12 run in the remainder of the period. That spark gave Sioux Falls a 30-25 lead going to the second quarter. Newman and Fall combined for 17-of-25 Charge points.
After a back and forth second quarter, Cleveland edged Sioux Falls 27-25 in the period. Dru Smith (career-high 15 points on 5-11 FGA and three assists) helped the Skyforce keep a 55-52 lead with his nine first half points, which led the team heading to intermission.
The Charge erupted for 36 third quarter points (14-22 FGA). The team had seven players score four-or-more in the period, as Norvelle Pelle led with nine in the quarter alone. The efficient offense helped pace a 81-75 lead for Cleveland heading to the final quarter.
Sioux Falls trailed by 12 points at the 3:45 mark in the fourth and were able to get the lead down to three with 9.7 seconds remaining before the Charge were able to hold on to snap a two-game losing streak.
Brandon Knight (17 points and seven assists) has continued to anchor the Skyforce offense, posting 15-or-more points in all five games this season. Miami HEAT two-way player Marcus Garrett (12 points, 10 rebounds and three assists) now has a double-double in three-of-four games.
Cleveland Cavaliers two-way player RJ Nembhard (10 points and 10 rebounds) has posted 10-or-more rebounds in four of his last five games.
Both teams square off in the series finale at the Pentagon on Sunday. Tip-off is slated for 3:00 PM CST.
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