Charge Downed by Armor in Overtime
The Canton Charge suffered a 94-91 loss to the Springfield Armor in overtime in front of 2,950 at the Canton Memorial Civic Center on Saturday night. The defeat puts Canton at 0-2 to start the year, while Springfield begins their 2012-13 season at 1-0.
Canton first gained the lead with 3:54 left in the first quarter when a Kevin Jones free-throw broke the 14-24 deadlock, and held the advantage for nearly the next 41 minutes of game time. It wasn’t until a Christian Polk jumper with 53 seconds left regained the lead for Springfield.
The Charge found themselves trailing by three with the ball and 7.1 seconds left. Antoine Agudio found limited space and heaved a jumper from beyond the arc while falling to the floor that found the bottom of the net and sent the game into extra time. Springfield would not be denied however, hitting a three-pointer of their own on the first possession of overtime and held the home team off the rest of the way.
Jones had his second double-double in as many nights, leading all scorers with 31 points on 12-of-21 shooting with 16 rebounds and one steal in 45 minutes. Arinze Onuaku also posted his second-straight double-double with 11 points, 13 rebounds and one steal in 23 minutes. Agudio finished with 16 points and three rebounds in 39 minutes, while Micheal Eric came off the bench to provide four points, eight boards, four assists and a steal in 27 minutes of relief.
Springfield was led by James Mays’ 23 points, 17 rebounds and three blocks in 44 minutes. Ben Uzoh supplied 16 points, 10 rebounds, six assists and two steals in 45 minutes. Both teams combined for 103 rebounds, with the Charge getting the edge, 52-51. All five Armor starters scored in double figures on the night.
The Charge will look to break into the win column when they head on the road for the first time this season when they travel to Fort Wayne to take on fellow East Division foes, the Mad Ants on Wednesday, November 28th at 7:00 p.m. Springfield will host the Sioux Falls Skyforce for their home opener Friday, November 30th at 7:00 p.m.
Charge Head Coach Alex Jensen
(Opening statement): “Offensive rebounds and turnovers (were the story tonight). I told the guys after the game that we didn’t lose because of Jorge (Gutierrez) missing a layup or missed jump shots. We lost because of way too many turnovers that led to 27 points off turnovers. We would play good defense and we wouldn’t finish it off with a rebound. That always hurts you offensively because you can’t get the rebound and go; you have to take it out after they make it. You don’t get the easy looks. I give credit to Bob (MacKinnon), he made some good adjustments. They came in well prepared. They were here the night before and I’m sure they watched our game last night. They did a great job of making the adjustments. In the end, we still beat ourselves. Giving up 20 offensive rebounds and turning the ball over 22 times (makes) it hard to win.”
(On if they played better defensively as a team tonight): “I think they did, for a lot of reasons. (It was) the second game we played and that helped a lot. We held them to 16 points in the first quarter and I think we held them pretty low in the second quarter. Sometimes you give in to fatigue. I try to tell them all the time that it just takes one guy to breakdown defensively. If they score, they score on the Charge, not one person. It just takes one guy to get tired or miss the rotation or not contest the shot. There are a lot of ways we improved tonight, but we can’t go anywhere turning the ball over that many times or giving up that many offensive rebounds.”
Guard Antoine Agudio
(On Springfield making a late run): “We missed shots, they executed and they hit the shots. We didn’t defend as well as we could. That’s the game of basketball: they hit shots and we didn’t defend. They went on their little run and we had to play catch-up and once again we came up short.”
(On if it’s tough losing a lead late in the game): “Yes, it really is; we beat ourselves. I think in the last game, we all found that out. We just have to get things right. It’s really tough. You see the stats and you see the film the next day, you know that you beat yourself. All the credit to them, they capitalized on our mistakes. Next time we play… we have to work on (fixing those) mistakes.”