(GREATER SUDBURY, ON) Friday evening’s contest against the Island Storm meant more than just two points for the Five after a tough road trip in Newfoundland against the St. John’s Edge.
Still ahead of the Edge for the Central Division lead, the Five returned back to the Nickel City looking for a boost from the hometown crowd.
The Five offense looked to be sparked by sharp shooter Jaylen Bland, who returned to the lineup after missing the last three games with a lower body injury.
The Five got off to a hot start in the first quarter thanks to the likes of league leading scorer Braylon Rayson and Kansas City, MO native Travis Releford who had 11 points each. Adam Blazek and Cory Dixon also chipped in for six points each. The Five offense was flying in the quarter, coming up with big rebounds and also collecting five timely steals. Sudbury got off to a hot start, leading the Storm 41-25 after the first.
After an electric first frame, the team’s settled down in the second quarter. The Five were led by a balanced offense in the second, with seven players registering at least two points in the quarter. Cory Dixon and Yohanny Dalembert both scored six points each to lead the Five in scoring in the second. Sampson Carter led all players in scoring in the half, netting 17 points for the Island Storm. The Five defense contained the Storm to just 21 points in the quarter, expanding their lead to 26 points moving into the third.
The Storm entered the third quarter needing a big offensive push to get back into the ball game. Both teams exchanged shots to open the frame, with Sampson Carter pulling up for a quick two points for the Storm, and Braylon Rayson hitting a returning three for the Five. After a back and forth half, the Island pulled away to exit the frame, going on an 8-0 run to close out the third. The Five offense was limited to just 22 points, moving into the final frame ahead 94-78.
The fourth quarter was all offense for both teams, with the Five attempting to increase the lead while the Storm tried to slowly claw back into the game. The Five were once again led by a balanced offense with nine different players registering at least two points for the club. Canadian Antoine Chandler led the Five in scoring, coming off the bench for seven points in the quarter. The Five offense was too much for the Storm to handle, with the Five winning the game 130-108.
Dallas, TX native Braylon Rayson once again led the way for the Five with 29 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 assists on route to another double-double. Cory Dixon and Grandy Glaze also finished with a double-double each, helping the Five gain their eighth win of the season.
Sudbury now turns their attention down south as the Five take on the KW Titans in a Sunday afternoon contest before they enter the Holiday Break. Game time is 2:00 PM.