FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Mad Ants, sponsored by Lutheran Health Network, fell Tuesday, February 17th to the Maine Red Claws 87-86 in front of a packed house of Hoosier and Mad Ant fans alike at the Allen Co. War Memorial Coliseum.
The Mad Ants held close with the Red Claws the entire duration of the first half despite several marginal lead changes and numerous shifts in the game’s momentum by each team. Maine would go into the locker room at the half with a 3 point lead and ability of having held Emmett, the 2015 D-League All-Star game MVP, to only 11 first half points. Emmett led the Mad Ants at the half with 11 points and 5 rebounds, while Gary Talton had 10 points with 5 assists. Christian Watford had 16 first half points and 5 early rebounds to push Maine to their 44-47 halftime lead.
The second half proved to be more of a fast paced challenge for both teams, being characterized by over 14 lead changes. With Maine up one with just a little over 12 seconds to go in the game, Talton would hit a key jumper to push the Mad Ants ahead 86-85. It was a late called foul on CJ Fair that would end in two made free throws from Maine’s Rodney McGruder that would end the night victorious for the Red Claws 87-86. Emmett led all scorers with 31 points and 8 rebounds. Talton ended his night with 15 points and 9 assists. Fair rounded out the score with 10 points and 9 rebounds.
For the Red Claws, Romero Osby led with 22 points, while Tim Frazier recorded a triple-double with 10 points, 13 rebounds, and 13 assists. Watford finished with 18 points.