LAST SECOND SHOT PROPELS THOROUGHBREDS to 2-0 START
The first time was so much fun that the Kentucky Thoroughbreds and the Kansas City Tornados decided to make an even better sequel.
A night after the two teams battled it out in a 4-point decision claimed by the visiting Thoroughbreds, the, both squads matched wits for the second and final time of a two-game set Thursday night at Municipal Arena and delivered with even more excitement.
Behind a shot with six seconds to go, the Thoroughbreds held on for a 117-116 overtime win in a wild, back-and-forth affair to head home with an early 2-0 start in the first-ever North American Premier Basketball (NAPB) league season.
Kentucky was led by Tyshawn Patterson (25 points), Demarcus Robinson (21 points), Fred Sturdivant (18 points, 13 rebounds), Chris Lightner (18 points) and CJ Trotte (17 points).
The homestanding Tornados (0-2) were led by Grant Greenberg (24 points, six rebounds), Charlton Jones (15 points, five rebounds), Franklin Williams (15 points), Jacob French (13 points, six rebounds), Taveres Sledge (12 points, eight rebounds) and Jordan Stotts (12 points, 12 rebounds).
Kentucky outside KC 46.9 to 38.7 percent from the field, but once again outrebounded their guests, 68-60 while the teams combined for 52 turnovers.
“It was a tale of two or three games actually,” Kentucky head coach Brandon Lesovsky said. “We were up 12 at halftime then they started taking control in the late third quarter and in the fourth we got down 10 with three minutes to go and then it was gut check time. We changed things up a little bit defensively and started getting some stops and tied it late to send it to overtime.
“We got stagnant again and they did some things that gave us some problem. Really, all it was we made one more shot than them at the end. I like how we hung in. We weren’t smooth, we weren’t crisp, we just hung in. Demarcus really gave us a left and we had some different guys step up and do some things.”
Calvin Thompson, the Tornados’ head coach saw improvement from the first night to this, most recent one.
“We played better, we were tougher, but came up short again,” Thompson said. “We were outrebounded by 15 in the first half, but we even it out a bit in second half. Just too many turnovers towards the end of the game. We defended better, we talked, we just made too many crucial turnovers at the end of the game.”
For the first two games of NAPB action in Kansas City, both coaches were pleased with the overall feel of the early action.
“From a league perspective, everyone should be happy with the quality of basketball and the entertainment this league is going to provide,” Lesovsky said. “I just think the entertainment value is through the roof. We won, so that might give me a different perspective, but it was high quality basketball by both teams.”
“It went well and the crowd really got into it tonight,” Thompson said. “They were loud toward the end of the game. They were really into the game.”
-Alan Dale, NAPB Media Relations