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Wednesday May 4th, 2016

Posted at 10:49pm

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It wasn’t easy, but the job got done. The Windsor Express hosted the Niagara River Lions in Game 2 action at the WFCU Centre Wednesday night, and walked off the court with the win. The Express’ strong third quarter carried them to a thrilling victory. They beat the River Lions 100-97 to take a two game lead in the opening best-of-five round. Windsor now leads the best-of-five series 2-0.

Conducting the Express was Brandon Robinson with 24 points. Kirk Williams Jr. put up 22 points while grabbing 13 rebounds. Tony Bennett added 17 points and 10 assists.

From the start, the River Lions had a powerful offense, and the Express struggled to keep up. Niagara was sinking three-pointers to sink Windsor into a deeper hole. Windsor bounced back a bit as Brandon Robinson and Kirk Williams Jr. landed timely three-point shots of their own. They were able to rally to within two by the end of the first.

Early speed from the Express allowed them to take the lead in the second. it was only temporary, though, as Niagara continued to pound away. the visitors hit two three-pointers, and followed up with colossal defense. Samuel Muldrow had an impressive defensive game with his towering blocks. He had 8 on the night, and held strong against Kirk Williams and Chris Commons. The Express fought hard to come back, trying to win the battles down low. Soon, they began to come alive. Williams rushed down the court for a slamming dunk. Just before the end of the quarter, Billy Rush sank a three-pointer. The shot was countered by a quick Niagara basket to close out the quarter. The River Lions were on top 48-45 after two quarters.

In the third, the Express did not have a good start to the second half. They airballed twice, and couldn’t make the baskets. Windsor was controlling the pace and possession, but the ball just wouldn’t drop. Tony Bennett stepped up in a big way as he scored three straight. Windsor finally seemed to be finding a groove. Williams came up with a giant one-handed block. Later, following a half-court steal, he made his way down the court for a thunderous dunk. Windsor’s defensive pressure picked up; the team forced plenty of Niagara turnovers. The quick turn of events had Bennett fired up. Players on the court were encouraging the fans, riling them up, getting them to cheer. it didn’t take long for the Express to take the lead. Seconds later, when Bennett missed a three-point shot, Maurice Bolden grabbed the rebound. he made a slick behind-the-back pass back to Bennett, and he laid it in to regain the lead. As time was winding down, Williams put up a shot that was blocked, but Muldrow, this time, was called for goaltending as the basket counted. Windsor was up by four at the end of three quarters.

With the momentum, the Express were able to build a ten-point lead over the River Lions. However, Niagara fired back with back-to-back threes. Eventually, they hit another to bring them to within three in the late stages of the quarter. In the final minutes, Windsor grabbed a rebound and it was dished off to Shaquille Keith for a monstrous dunk. It became a 5-point game with eight seconds to go. Niagara was able to get a basket, but not nearly quick enough. With a second to go, the River Lions just let the time go down to zero. Windsor rallied back for a 100-97 win over Niagara.

Games 3 and 4 are this Friday and Saturday in St. Catharines at 7:00pm. If necessary, Game 5 will be Tuesday, May 10th at the WFCU Centre at 7:30pm.

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