Wisconsin Declaws Maine with a 134-118 Victory
OSHKOSH, Wis - The Wisconsin Herd (25-8), the NBA G League affiliate of the Milwaukee Bucks, collected a 134-118 victory over the Maine Red Claws (22-9) on Saturday night inside Menominee Nation Arena.
Six Herd players scored in double figures, including three who tallied 20 points or more. Wisconsin was led by Jaylen Adams and Frank Mason who scored 26 points apiece. Adams added seven rebounds and seven assists, while Mason shot 10-for-19 from the field. Trevor Lacey collected his first 20-point game and tallied season highs in points (20) and field goals (eight), while tying his season-high with four three-pointers. Cameron Reynolds notched 17 points and six rebounds, and Leon Gilmore III added 11 points and four rebounds off the bench.
Yante Maten led the way for the Red Claws as he scored a game-high 34 points and grabbed 15 rebounds in a reserve role. Jaysean Paige recorded 26 points (10-17 FG), six rebounds and four assists, while Tremont Waters recorded 16 points and eight assists. Bryce Brown had 15 points and Tacko Fall scored just four points but had 14 rebounds and four blocks.
In similar fashion to Friday night, offense was plentiful at the outset. In the first three minutes of the game, the two teams combined for 25 points after shooting 9-of-14 from the floor. Maine tallied the first basket of the contest, but upon reaching the first media timeout, Wisconsin collected four three-pointers and all five starters cracked the scoring column. The Herd's offensive success persisted throughout the period, and with 5:19 remaining the stanza, Wisconsin collected its first double-digit lead of the evening. The Red Claws managed to slice nine points off the Herd's lead, but with just over 90 seconds left in the frame, Wisconsin reopened a double figure lead on a layup by Reynolds. Maine tallied the final five points of the first quarter, but after shooting 50% from the field, the Herd led 33-28 at the end of the opening 12 minutes.
Wisconsin totaled eight of the first 11 points in the second quarter and led 41-31 on the heels of an old-fashioned three-point play by Mason. Moments later, Reynolds and Mason connected on back-to-back layups and the Herd opened a 13-point lead. The quick four-point strike gave Wisconsin a 47-34 advantage, and it forced a prompt timeout with 9:06 remaining in the half. Following the stoppage, the Red Claws responded with a 7-0 run and cut the Herd's lead to six. Despite the run, Maine couldn't draw closer, and by the end of the half, the Red Claws faced yet another double-digit deficit. Adams capped the quarter by scoring the final six points on a 28 and 29-foot three-pointer. Adams' 21 first half points and three double figure scorers is what aided Wisconsin to a 75-60 lead at the intermission.
To start the second half, Adams and Mason poured in five quick points which upped the Herd's lead to 20. Wisconsin's 20-point advantage didn't last long as Maine made it an 87-79 game with 3:24 left to play in the third quarter. The Herd scored 10 of the quarter's first 15 points, but after the initial success, the Red Claws used an extended 16-2 run to pull to within six. However, Maine was unable to push past the six-point threshold despite Wisconsin shooting just 36% in the period. The Red Claws outscored the Herd by five and shot 50% from the floor but trailed by 10 heading into the final 12 minutes.
The fourth quarter began with both teams combining for 13 points in a minute and a half. The teams totaled five straight field goals, but it was Wisconsin who scored eight of the 13 points. The Herd owned a 19-point advantage in the quarter, but a dunk by Fall with 8:42 left made it an 109-101 game. Following a swift Wisconsin timeout, the Herd retook control and scored 10 of the next 12 points. Lacey sparked Wisconsin to victory as he led all scorers with 14 fourth quarter points. He made six of his seven field goals and at one point, Lacey scored 11 straight points for the Herd. Both teams shot well over 50% in the period, but Wisconsin made 14 of its 22 field goals, nailed seven three-pointers, scored 35 points and won 134-118.
With the win, the Herd upped its Eastern Conference lead to two games over the Red Claws. In addition, Wisconsin is now 7-1 all-time against Maine, and the seven wins are tied for the most against a single opponent in franchise history. The Herd have won both meetings with against the Red Claws this season, and the two teams will square off one more time on Mar. 15.
Wisconsin will hit the road for a single game against College Park on Tuesday, Feb. 11. Tip-off against the Skyhawks is set for 10AM CT in College Park, Georgia.
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