Westchester Snaps Windy City's Three-Game Winning Streak, Beats Bulls 127-118
The Windy City Bulls, presented by BMO Harris Bank, the NBA G League affiliate of the Chicago Bulls, had their three-game winning streak snapped with a 127-118 loss to the Westchester Knicks on Thursday morning at Westchester County Arena.
Six Bulls players scored in double figures led by Kaiser Gates who set career-highs with 28 points and eight three-pointers, while adding 10 rebounds and logging a game-high 37 minutes. JaKarr Sampson posted a stat line of 28 points, eight rebounds, two assists and two blocks, while Brandon Sampson added 19 points in his return to Windy City. Walt Lemon Jr. collected his third consecutive double-double with 13 points and 10 assists, and Mychal Mulder had 11 points and seven rebounds. Rawle Alkins pitched in with 10 points, six rebounds and four assists in a reserve role.
Westchester was led by Jameel Warney who poured in a game-high 33 points and grabbed 13 rebounds. Billy Garret recorded 22 points and four assists, while Two-Way player Kadeem Allen notched his first career triple-double with 16 points, career-high 12 rebounds and 12 assists. Sekou Wiggs totaled 14 points, six rebounds and seven assists off the bench, and Paul Watson had 12 points and five rebounds. Stephen Zimmerman added 11 points and 14 rebounds.
Thursday's early morning tip featured two of the best defensive teams in the NBA G League. Westchester entered the contest allowing the second-fewest points per game at 104.1, while Windy City surrenders 104.4 points, which sits at the third-best mark in the league. The Knicks opened the contest by making five of their first 10 shots, but the Bulls kept pace and trailed by just one upon the first media timeout despite shooting 33 percent in the opening 5:33. Westchester led by as many as seven as they collectively shot 54 percent from the floor in the first quarter. Windy City made 10 of their 23 field goals and ultimately tied the game at 21, but the Knicks scored four of the final six points and led 27-23 at the end of the opening 12 minutes.
Westchester collected the first five points of the second quarter, which pushed their lead to nine. They went on take their first double-digit advantage of the morning and led by as many as 18 points in the period. Windy City's offense stalled as they collected just three field goals in the opening eight minutes of the frame. However, late in the half, the Bulls made a small run and trimmed their deficit to single digits as Gates and Sampson connected on back-to-back three-pointers. Despite the mini 6-0 run, Windy City was unable to draw closer as the Knicks scored nine of the final 11 points in the half. Westchester shot 64 percent in the stanza, outscored the Bulls by 12 and led 62-46 at the intermission.
The start of the third quarter belonged to Windy City as they made four of their first six shots in the second half, while managing to cut the Knicks' lead to 11. The run not only infused some life into the Bulls, but it forced a Westchester timeout at the 9:03 mark. In response to the Bulls' run, the Knicks rattled off nine consecutive points to increase their lead to 20, which served as the high-water mark for either team. Windy City scored 34 points and made 52 percent of their field goals, but Westchester was just as in sync offensively as they netted 36 points on 14-of-24 shooting. Even with the strong third quarter performance, the Bulls were outpaced by two and trailed by 18 heading into the final 12 minutes.
The Knicks tallied the first basket of the fourth quarter to retake 20-point advantage, which matched their largest of the game. Following the score, Windy City made a run and pulled to within eight on the heels of a 13-1 spurt. The Bulls got to within six on a couple occasions, but that's as close as they would get. The Bulls shot 54 percent and outscored the Knicks by seven in the second half, but Westchester led the contests from start to finish. Garrett served as the close for the Knicks, scoring 12 points in the final frame, leading Westchester to a 127-118 win, their 27th of the season.
The 127 points are the most the Bulls have allowed in a single game this season, eclipsing the 125 points they surrendered to Grand Rapids on Nov. 3. Westchester wins the season series 2-1 and the two teams have split the 10 head-to-head meetings winning five games apiece.
Windy City will travel to North Carolina on Friday to take on the Greensboro Swarm on Saturday night. Tip-off inside The Fieldhouse is set for 7pm CT.
Fans can stay up-to-date on team news by following the team on Twitter (@WindyCityBulls) or visiting WindyCityBulls.com. Full season membership, group, and single tickets for the 2018-19 Windy City Bulls season are on sale now. For all ticket information and full season schedule, visit WindyCityBulls.com.
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