(WINDSOR, ON) – The Windsor Express drew first blood on a half jumper by Juan Pattillo from inside the paint as they opened NBL Canada action against the St John’s Edge tonight. Both teams were seeking their first win of the young season.
Defensive breakdowns allowed the visitors too many offensive rebounds and Windsor was playing catch-up for much of the opening 4 minutes. A slow opening period saw the difference being a drive to the bucket by DeAndre Thomas for a 24-22 Windsor lead heading into the 2nd quarter.
Both teams combined for a series of long balls and no-touch drives without any real production to open the 2nd period. The Edge crept into a 7-point lead with under 5 minutes to play though neither team could string together any offensive consistency. St John’s led by 11 at halftime, 53-42, despite a short run by Windsor until two late triples from Jared Nickens.
Windsor trailed the Edge in shooting through the first 24 minutes, hitting on just 48.4% from the floor, 15-of-31 and only 2-for-11 from long range. St John’s exceeded both with 54.1% and 52.6% respectively. Though the Express turned the ball over just three times, the Edge converted those possessions into 7 points. The visiting bench also out scored the home side 27-11 to add insult to injury.
Patillo led Windsor with 12 points while Nickens topped all shooters with 15 in the half, on the strength of five from downtown.
Starting the 2nd half, St John’s quickly ran out to a 19-point lead with little response by Windsor. The Edge built their lead on a 17-4 run to start the quarter while the Express couldn’t produce despite a constant parade to the line. A 6-0 run by Windsor was wiped clean by three straight triples by Todd Brown, Jr. The clock mercifully wound down with St John’s enjoying a 89-69 margin with 12 minutes to play.
The final quarter was much like the previous three as St John’s maintained the 20-point gap over the Express. The Edge surpassed the 100-point mark on a fast break with 6:27 on the clock. The lead ballooned to 108-81 with 3 minutes remaining.
The inevitable played out with the final score 113-86.
While the Edge flew home for their first home game on November 23 vs Moncton the Express had a short turnaround to prepare to meet Kitchener-Waterloo on the road Thursday night. Windsor’s next home game is November 28 as Sudbury returns to Windsor.