Drive Get Back in Win Column against Bayhawks

By Matt Besselsen | January 10, 2015

ERIE, Pennsylvania – The Erie BayHawks (7-14) were defeated by the Grand Rapids Drive (11-9) 96-93 to lose their fifth straight game of the season. Lenzelle Smith attempted a game-tying three at the buzzer to send the BayHawks to overtime for the second time in as many nights but the shot clanked off the rim. Erie is just 1-8 this season in games decided by single digits.

Daniel Coursey and Kadeem Batts went to work early in the first quarter, scoring 10 of Erie’s first points. Their point total in last night’s loss to the Canton Charge was eight. Curry got it going after he hit his second three of the game to increase Erie’s first quarter lead to nine. Grand Rapids then used a 16-3 run to take the lead heading into the second frame 27-23.

Grand Rapids continued their hot streak with an early second quarter bucket, extending their lead to six. Kelsie Barlow’s slam gave the Drive their second six point lead of the quarter. Newly acquired Mark McLaughlin from Central Washington recorded his first points as a BayHawk to dig into the Drive lead. Lorenzo Brown was able to silent a steady BayHawk attack with an and-one to give the Drive their biggest lead of the game at 11. After Erie and Grand Rapids traded 5-0 runs, Erie was able to score six straight to head into the half only trailing by two.

Peyton Siva’s first field goal of the game came midway through the third quarter but Adonis Thomas’ back-to-back three-pointers got the Drive lead back up to five. A 5-0 BayHawk run had the game tied at 60 while the teams traded baskets for the remainder of the quarter, highlighted by eight straight Curry points that included two more threes. Grand Rapids led heading into the final quarter 71-70.

Grand Rapids guard L.D. Williams knocked down two straight threes early in the fourth to extend the Drive lead to seven. Erie was forced to call a timeout as the Drive started the quarter on an 8-3 run. Erie was able to battle back and eventually tie the game at 81 on a McLaughlin three. A John Bohannon three-point play cut the Drive lead to one until Thomas hit a tough fade away jumper. McLaughlin’s tip-in after Bohannon’s miss again made the deficit a single digit, but Brown’s three with 1:30 to go handed Grand Rapids a 5-0 to take a six point lead.

After trading two-point field goals, Drew Crawford hit a three to make it a three point game with 33 seconds left. A BayHawk stop and two Curry’s free throws on the other end pushed the game to just one again. After two Drive free throws, Erie’s Lenzelle Smith had a chance to send the game into overtime at the buzzer but the shot was off. Erie fell to the Drive 96-93 and have now lost five straight games.

Crawford led the way for Erie with 19 points and eight rebounds as Curry totaled 18 points and seven boards. Batts, who dominated the first half with 12 points, was only able to add four more in the second half to record 16 points. Coursey’s six points all came in the first quarter and John Bohannon was one rebound short of his second double-double in a row with 13 points and nine rebounds. McLaughlin had 12 in his NBA Development League debut with ten coming in the final frame.

Lorenzo Brown for Grand Rapids led all scorers with 27 points on 8-12 shooting. Willie Reed recorded a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds while Adonis Thomas tallied 19. L.D. Williams finished with 12 to lead the Drive bench in scoring.

The Erie BayHawks travel to Sioux Falls to take on the Skyforce Tuesday before heading to Santa Cruz for the second time this season, this time to participate in the 2015 NBA D-League Showcase.