66ers Defeat Energy To Advance To NBA D-League Finals
In what turned out to be a battle down the stretch, the Energy’s Denham Brown looked to get going offensively early, as he scored seven points early in the first quarter and Iowa grabbed a 13-7 lead with 7:28 remaining. The 66ers battled back with a 6-2 run to take a 16-15 lead after a Washington dunk with 5:48 left. The 66ers held on for a 27-23 advantage at the break, as they shot 11-for-23 from the field, led by Wink Adams with six first quarter points. Brown led the Energy with seven points, as they shot 9-for-22.
The 66ers built a 37-30 lead with nine minutes remaining in the first half, after two Latavious Williams free throws. The Energy were then able to cut the lead to three points at 37-34 with 7:59 left, before Tulsa went on a 24-11 run to finish the half and took a 61-45 lead into halftime. Williams scored 12 points and grabbed five boards in the quarter, as the 66ers shot 10-for-18 from the field and 12-of-12 from the free throw line in the period. Curtis Stinson led the Energy with six points in the quarter, as Iowa shot 9-for-26 and 4-of-5 from the line. The 66ers outscored the Energy 34-22 in the quarter, and held Iowa to 1-for-12 shooting from three-point range in the half.
Stinson looked to keep the Energy within striking distance in the third quarter, scoring 12 points as they shot 11-for-22 from the field and got to within 89-79 at the break. Washington and Larry Owens scored six points apiece in the quarter for Tulsa, as they shot 7-for-22 from the field and converted 13-of-14 free throws.
Iowa utilized a 16-8 run to start the fourth quarter to get within 99-95 after a Stinson jumper with 6:19 left in the game. The 66ers built their lead back to seven points at 106-99 with 3:26 on the clock after an Owens free throw. A Cecil Brown free throw extended the lead to 111-103 with 2:10 left. Tulsa made 9-of-19 field goals and 18-of-24 free throws in the quarter, as they held on to win the game down the stretch. Mark Tyndale scored 13 fourth quarter points, as the Energy made 15-of-26 from the field.
The 44 free throws made, and 51 attempted were both season-highs for the 66ers.
Owens scored 20 points and grabbed 14 rebounds in 44 minutes of action for the 66ers. Williams came off the bench for 19 points and nine boards, shooting 7-of-8 from the field. JaJuan Smith and Brown each scored 15 points, before Brown left the game late as a precaution for an ankle injury suffered earlier in the season. Moses Ehambe scored 14 points off the bench, while Wink Adams contributed 11 points and seven assists.
Stinson led the Energy with 32 points and 11 assists before being ejected with two minutes left in the game after two technical fouls. Tyndale came off the bench for 25 points, while Pat Carroll and Jeff Trepagnier each scored 16. Brown put up 15 points and grabbed 12 boards, while Connor Atchley added 11 points.
The 66ers will play the winner of the Rio Grande Valley/Austin Semi-Finals series, with Game 1 at home in the Tulsa Convention Center. Dates and times for the Finals will be determined at a later date.