Fort Wayne 131, Sioux Falls 127
SIOUX FALLS, S.D., Jan. 15, 2009 - Maybe this long road trip won't be so bad after all.
Recently acquired Carl Elliot scored a season-high 31 points and Frank Williams added 30 and 18 assists Thursday as the Fort Wayne Mad Ants began a 10-game trek with their first road win of the season, a 131-127 shootout over the Sioux Falls Skyforce.
The Mad Ants had lost their first five road games and were the D-League's last winless road team. This was the first of 10 consecutive games on the road, a stretch that does not end until Feb. 7.
Earlier this week, Elliot was acquired from the Skyforce for David Bailey. Both played as if they had something to prove to their former teams as Bailey also scored a season-high 31.
Elliot made 11-of-18 shots, including 5-of-7 3-pointers, and added six steals and five assists. He scored 19 of Fort Wayne's 46 points in the fourth quarter, including a jumper and 3-pointer that gave the Mad Ants (7-11) the lead for good at 105-100 with 6:35 to go.
Four free throws by Russell built the lead to 127-120 with 16 seconds left, and Fort Wayne held on despite a final flurry from Bailey, who scored 16 of Sioux Falls' 42 points in the fourth quarter.
This was Bailey's second game in his return to the Skyforce (12-9), having played for Sioux Falls last season. He made 9-of-14 shots, including 5-of-8 from the arc, and added six assists.
Ron Howard scored 20 points and Dewitt Scott added 17 for the Mad Ants, who had six players in double figures and shot 52 percent (45-of-86), including 14-of-24 from the arc. They scored a staggering 84 points in the second half.
Frank Williams scored 29 points, Gary Ervin added 15 and Gary Forbes 14 for the Skyforce, which also had six scorers in double digits and shot 53.5 percent
(46-of-86), including 15-of-35 on 3-pointers.
The teams meet here again Friday night. They also meet here Feb. 6, the ninth game of Fort Wayne's trip.