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Well-Balanced Wizards Win Battle with Arsenal

February 10, 2007 - NBA G League (G League) - Anaheim Arsenal News Release

Anaheim, Calif. - In a game that was close most of the way, the visiting Dakota Wizards pulled away in the final minutes to secure a 101-88 victory against the Arsenal Saturday night at the Anaheim Convention Center. The Wizards had a well-balanced attack, which included rookie Rod Benson, who scored 11 points and posted a career-high 21 rebounds.

The Wizards took a six-point advantage into halftime, leading 48-42, before the home side fought back in the third quarter. The Arsenal outscored Dakota 24-23 over the next 12 minutes and eventually tied the score at 77 with just over eight minutes remaining in the fourth. It was the first time the score had been even since mid-way through the first, but the Wizards finished the game on a 24-11 run to pull square with Ft. Worth for the best record (18-9) in the D-League's Eastern Division.

"Whenever you can go on the road and win an ugly game, it's good," said Dakota head coach David Joerger. "Benson played great for us. The Arsenal has been playing great basketball as of late, and we were lucky to get out of here with a win."

Benson grabbed 12 offensive rebounds as the Wizards controlled the paint, outscoring Anaheim 62-30.

All-star selection Renaldo Major and Curtis Stenson each had 20 points, with Kevin Lyde adding 17 of his own. Quemont Green also came up big with 12 points, 14 boards, and four assists.

The Arsenal was led by Steven Smith with 17 points. Majic Dorsey just missed a triple-double with 16 points, nine rebounds, and eight assists. Jawad Williams went for 14 and nine rebounds, while Tyler Smith and Andre Owens hit 13 and 11, respectively.

"For as poorly as we shot, our defense was good enough to keep us in the game," said head coach Reggie Geary. "But giving up 21 offensive boards and 62 points in the paint makes it tough to win. To be an elite team in this league, we need to be able to beat these caliber teams."

The Arsenal (15-17) will be in action again Tuesday night when they face the Tulsa 66ers at 7:00 p.m. for the third game of their current five-game home stand. The Wizards will travel to Bakersfield to take on the Jam tomorrow night, also tipping off at 7:00.

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