After winning two of their previous outings, the Canton Charge were poised to keep their momentum rolling this weekend for a back-to-back set (Friday and Saturday).
Friday night, the Charge hosted Raptors 905 (Toronto Raptors affiliate) inside Canton Memorial Civic Center. The results were less than pleasing.
Raptors 905 led nearly wire-to-wire on Friday night. Five Raptors tallied double digits in the scoring column, led by Axel Toupane’s game-high 32 points off the bench.
Things weren’t much better on the rebounding front for Canton, as they were beaten on the glass 49-34.
On a brighter note, Kevin Olekaibe made four three-pointers and led the Charge in scoring with 14 points.
When the smoke cleared inside Canton Memorial Civic Center on Friday night, the Charge had suffered their worst defeat of the season (104-72).
The Charge didn’t have much time to dwell on their disappointing loss to the Raptors. This year’s NBA D-League season is still young. Tough losses have to be learned from – then placed squarely in the rearview mirror.
On Saturday night, the Charge hosted the Long Island Nets – the third matchup of the season between the two sides (1-1 vs Nets coming into tonight).
The Charge jumped out to an early nine point lead near the mid-way point of the first quarter; they seemed to be cruising. Even more in Canton’s favor, Long Island was struggling to make a shot – from anywhere. However, the Nets finally managed to find their shooting stroke in the closing minutes of the first. After one quarter of play, the Charge were leading by just two points (19-17).
Both teams scored well through the early stages of the second quarter. With 9:00 remaining in the half, the Nets tied the game at 21. C.J. McCollough hit a three that sparked a 5-0 Long Island run. The Nets then continued to pour offensive pressure all over Canton’s defense. A 15-9 Nets run resulted in a nine point Charge deficit at the halftime horn (44-35).
Coming out of the locker room, the Charge were obviously in need of a come-back effort. Chris Evans came out of the halftime gate and knocked down two clutch three-pointers, trimming Long Island’s lead to four. After Kevin Olekaibe sank another three, Long Island called a frustrated time-out.
The Charge continued to fight. Quinn Cook’s driving layup tied the game at 59 with 4:00 remaining in the third. After three quarters of play, Canton held a three point advantage (68-65).
Both teams were off the mark in the opening minutes of the final quarter. It seemed like this one was going down to the wire. With 2:26 showing on the game clock, the Charge were clinging to a one-point lead. Despite a late Nets rally, the Charge were able to close out the game by scoring on all five of their final possessions. When the dust settled on Saturday night, the Charge held on for a one point win.
Quinn Cook scored a game-high 27 points, six rebounds, and four assists in 40 minutes against the Nets.
Eric Moreland played a key defensive role for Canton in Friday’s win. In his first start of the year, Moreland tallied 11 points, nine rebounds and a Charge individual season-high five steals.
The Charge will be back in action on Wednesday, December 7th, when they host the Texas Legends (Dallas Mavericks affiliate) inside Canton Memorial Civic Center at 7:00 pm EST.