Windy City Drops Second Consecutive Game, Loses 115-101 to Erie
The Windy City Bulls, presented by BMO Harris Bank, the NBA G League affiliate of the Chicago Bulls, suffered their second consecutive defeat with a 115-101 loss to the Erie BayHawks on Friday night at Erie Insurance Arena.
Six Bulls players scored in double figures led by Brandon Sampson who totaled a team-high 18 points. Walt Lemon Jr. scored 16 points and added seven assists, while JaKarr Sampson and Kaiser Gates tallied 15 points apiece. Thomas Wilder recorded 12 points, career-high nine rebounds and three assists, and Mychal Mulder posted a stat line of 11 points, four rebounds, three assists and three steals, while surpassing Antonio Blakeney for first on the Windy City all-time points list.
Erie was shorthanded as they had eight active players going into the contest. Cat Barber and Isaac Humphries led the way as they each registered double-doubles. Barber totaled 20 points, 10 assists and four steals, while Humphries posted 20 points, 11 rebounds and four assists. Jordan Sibert and Jeremy Hollowell had 17 points apiece and Jaylen Morris tallied a double-double of his own with 16 points, 10 rebounds and six assists. Kameron Chatman pitched in with 13 points, seven rebounds and two steals.
In a contrast of styles, Friday's matchup featured the second-highest scoring offense in Erie who average 116.8 points per game and Windy City who surrenders 106.3 points, which is the third-lowest total in the NBA G League. After trailing by four upon the first media timeout, the Bulls scored seven of the next nine points to take a 13-12 lead, their first of the evening. There wasn't much separation in the opening 10 minutes as there were four ties and four lead changes. However, Erie managed to end the frame on a high note as they scored the final seven points in the period. In total, Windy City shot 29 percent from the floor, 1-for-9 from three and trailed 25-19 at the end of the first 12 minutes.
The BayHawks began the second quarter by scoring the opening four points, which allowed them to take their first double-digit lead of the night. Windy City sliced the deficit to six, but on the heels of a 12-4 run, Erie upped their lead to 14, was their largest of the first half. Facing the 51-37 deficit, the Bulls pulled to within six once more as Brandon Sampson and Mychal Mulder combined to score eight consecutive points. Windy City was unable to inch closer as the BayHawks reupped their lead to double figures. Trailing by 11 and with time running down, Brandon Sampson scored the final points of the half by nailing a buzzer-beating jumper. Despite ending the half on a high note, Erie shot 53 percent in the first two quarters and led by nine at the intermission.
In similar fashion to the second quarter, the BayHawks began the second half by tallying the first nine points. The 9-0 run spanned nearly three minutes and gave Erie an 18-point advantage. Conversely, the Bulls missed their first four shots of the third period and didn't tally their first points until the 9:25 mark. Barber scored half of his points in the stanza as he collected 10 points on 4-of-7 shooting. Collectively, the BayHawks posted their second straight 30-point quarter while shooting 65 percent from the floor. They outscored Windy City by 14 and led 93-70 heading into the final 12 minutes.
The Bulls had their best offensive quarter in the fourth, but it was a little too late. Early in the period, Erie's lead swelled to 25, which served as the largest of the night. Windy City shot 50 percent but trailed by double figures for the entire frame. The Bulls outpaced Erie by nine, but the BayHawks won their 23rd game of the season in convincing fashion, 115-101.
With the loss, Windy City has dropped consecutive games for the first time since Jan. 23-26 when they fell to the Wisconsin Herd and Raptors 905. Additionally, this is just the third time they've lost back-to-back games by double figures this season. After winning the first head-to-head meeting, the Bulls drop the final two games in the season series and fall to 5-5 all-time against Erie.
Windy City will conclude its third regular season tomorrow night at home against the division rival Canton Charge. With a win and a Grand Rapids loss, the Bulls can clinch their first Central Division title in franchise history. Tip-off at Sears Centre Arena is set for 7:00pm CT.
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