D-Fenders Shut Down Skyforce
LOS ANGELES, Calif.- The Los Angeles D-Fenders of the NBA Development League bested the Sioux Falls Skyforce 94-85 at STAPLES Center tonight. This is the second game that the Sioux Falls Skyforce have dropped on their west coast swing, just as the D-Fenders were coming off a weekend road trip with two losses.
D-Fenders forward Jackie Manuel guided Los Angeles to an early 11 point first quarter lead. Manuel had 10 first quarter points, going 5-6 from the field. He finished the game with 22 points and 5 rebounds.
The Skyforce erased their early first quarter deficit by outscoring the D-Fenders 24-13 in the second quarter to go into halftime all square at 45-45.
Los Angeles opened the second half with an 8-0 run and quickly jumped out to a favorable 11 point lead. D-Fenders guard Brian Chase had 12 points in the period, including two buckets from beyond the arc.
Forward Andre Patterson sparked the third quarter surge with a break away dunk leading to his 13 points off the bench. Patterson also finished the contest with a team-high 11 rebounds and 4 steals.
“It was one of my best games of the year and I’m just trying to get better. I’m continuing to learn everyday,” said Patterson.
Former Los Angeles guard Elton Nesbitt shined for Sioux Falls in the second half and had 11 points in the 4th quarter in a Sioux Falls attempted comeback. Nesbitt completed the match-up with a team-high 20 points.
“I’m extremely please with Elton. We need a shooter and he is what the doctor ordered,” said Skyforce Head Coach Mo McHone of his new guard.
Guard Frank Williams added 14 points for the Skyforce, including 3 treys. However, Los Angeles guard Brian Chase proved to be too much to contain for Sioux Falls. Chase finished the game with 26 points, five assists, and five 3-pointers.
“Things weren’t going our way, but I’m happy with the way we gutted things out. We came out in the 3rd quarter, stole back the momentum and took control of the game,” added D-Fenders Head Coach Dan Panaggio.
The D-Fenders and Skyforce will rematch Wednesday, December 6, before the Lakers game, on the hardwood at STAPLES Center with a 3:30 tip off.