ERIE, Penn. – The Erie BayHawks and Fort Wayne Mad Ants squared off in a central division showdown Thursday night at the Erie Insurance Arena. Coming off a five-day layoff, Fort Wayne controlled nearly the entire game against Erie, who was playing their third game in four nights and downed the BayHawks by a final score of 116-98.
The Mad Ants (12-8) held Erie (6-14) to just 34.6% shooting in the first quarter and used a 21-5 run to close the frame with a 33-21 lead. Fort Wayne stretched their lead to 18 points in the second and held a 62-45 lead at the break. The Mad Ants were aided by 15 points off the bench from Tony Mitchell in the first half.
Erie was able to cut Fort Wayne’s lead down to 13 by the end of the third due to an increased effort on the defensive end of the floor. The Mad Ants started the fourth quarter with a 13-4 run and their lead ballooned to 25, their largest of the game with 5:56 left in the game. Erie managed to draw within 18 when the final buzzer rang and fell by a final score of 116-98.
Mustafa Shakur paced Erie with 19 points, six assists and five rebounds. Ricky Davis added 19 points and four assists while Justin Brownlee pitched in with 15 points and nine rebounds for the BayHawks. Mitchell led all scorers with 23 points and added seven rebounds for the Mad Ants. Trey McKinney-Jones chipped in with 17 and Ron Howard added 15 for Fort Wayne.
The BayHawks will travel to Maine to face the Red Claws on Saturday night. Fort Wayne will wrap up their brief two-game road trip with a visit to Iowa on Saturday. Erie returns home on Monday for a 2 pm contest against the Delaware 87ers. The game will be broadcast live on CBS Sports Network.