Skyforce Cap Season with Overtime Setback
The Sioux Falls Skyforce and Northern Arizona Suns made things last a little longer on Saturday night as the hosts prevailed 141-137 in overtime to end the 2017-18 season.
Sioux Falls (25-25) finishes the season with five straight losses breaking a string of four consecutive winning seasons, but maintain a streak of six non-losing seasons. Considering the Suns (23-27) began training camp scrambling after Head Coach Ty Ellis was called up to Phoenix on October 24 and Cody Toppert was named successor just before the G League season began, their roller-coaster season was truly impressive.
Twists and turns marked the path of the season-ender as Derrick Walton, Jr. was ruled out with an injury prior to the contest, forcing the Skyforce to turn to Jalen Bradley for his first start of the season. The new lineup clicked initially by holding the Suns to 10-28 shooting in the opening quarter while countering with a 16-29 effort themselves surging to a 17-point lead at one point.
Quarter two was the reverse of the first as the Suns led by eight at intermission and by six after three. With 1:59 left in the game, 9 points separated the two squads. The Skyforce quickly landed a haymaker in the form of a four-point play from Ike Nwamu (32 points, 5 steals) to begin the regulation comeback. Nwamu wasn’t done. Two more buckets in close by the second-year pro plus Bubu Palo (25 points, 8 assists) and Alonzo Gee (24 points, 11 rebounds) doing the same capped a 12-1 flourish that gave Sioux Falls the edge with 24.9 left. Northern Arizona tied the game seven seconds later and overtime was the next destination.
With 18.4 left in the extra session Alan Williams (25 points, 12 rebounds) put back an offensive rebound and made the free throw to gain a three-point edge for the Suns which they were able to maintain. Forward Peter Jok hit all four of his three point tries on the way to 22 points for Northern Arizona while Kadeem Jack collected another double-double (25 points, 15 rebounds) for the ‘Force.