Mad Ants Bounce Back From First Loss

The Mad Ants regained their confidence back at home following their first loss of the season to the Raptors this past Thursday. The Mad Ants (7-1) defeated the Windy City Bulls (5-4) 95-83 Saturday night.

The Bulls held the lead for most of the first quarter. They were led by Aaron Thomas who scored seven points in the opening quarter.

Fort Wayne struggled with being in foul trouble for most of the first half. Julyan Stone and Travis Leslie picked up two quick fouls each in the first quarter.

A pair of and-1’s from Trey McKinney-Jones and Jordan Lloyd brought the Mad Ants to a one point deficit with a minute remaining in the quarter.

A 3-pointer from Christian Watford tied the game at 24 in the final seconds of the first quarter; however, a late foul put the Bulls on the line with .6 seconds left, as Windy City took the lead 25-24 heading into the 2nd quarter.

Windy City looked to lengthen their lead at the beginning of the second quarter. The Bulls started the quarter with a 10-2 run to go up 34-27.

The Mad Ants battled back with help from two 3-pointers from Stephan Hicks to cut the deficit to three. A steal, followed by a fast break layup from Leslie cut the Bulls’ lead to one with 2:06 remaining in the half.

An emphatic put-back slam from McKinney-Jones tied the game at 47 with 37 seconds remaining in the half. A deep ball from Leslie gave Fort Wayne its first lead since the start of the game, as the Mad Ants went into half up 50-47.

Poythress led the Mad Ants in scoring with 12 points and six rebounds in the half. McKinney-Jones followed with 11 of his own. Lloyd facilitated, contributing 3 assists to the cause. Fort Wayne’s offense struggled from the field in the first half. The Mad Ants shot 38% from the field, along with shooting just 26% from 3-point range.

Alfonzo McKinnie led the Windy City Bulls in scoring with 13 points. Thomas and Spencer Dinwiddie provided 9 points each.

Fort Wayne kept control of the game during the third, capitalizing on second chance points. Mad Ants built the lead off an 8-2 run, a dunk from Hicks followed by a three from Stone drove the lead to 7. The momentum continued after a jumper by Watford in the last seconds of the 3rd, giving the Mad Ants a 13-point lead (74-61) to end the quarter.

Fort Wayne prevented any chance of a comeback by Windy City. Hicks dominated in the fourth quarter hitting a trey-ball and grabbing a steal, leading the fast break to an easy layup. He led the Mad Ants in the quarter with 5 points.

Bulls had four players in double digits; Thomas-19, McKinnie-18, Dinwiddie-14, and J.J. Avila-13. McKinnie recorded a double-double scoring 18 points and 14 rebounds.

Poythress and Leslie both recorded double doubles; Poythress’ consisting of 18 points and 10 rebounds, while 10-10 from the line and Leslie tacked on 15 points and 11 rebounds. McKinney-Jones finished with 14 points and Hicks logged a total of 13 points, 9 from behind the arc.

The Mad Ants will play again on Thursday at home against the Red Claws. The game on December 8th, will tipoff at 7 p.m.