Mad Ants Grab Win In Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Rakeem Christmas scored 18 points as the Fort Wayne Mad Ants beat the Grand Rapids Drive 99-96 on Sunday afternoon in front of 1,920 fans at the DeltaPlex Arena.
Grand Rapids’ Darrun Hilliard hit a 3-pointer with 1.5 seconds left in the game to get within one point at 97-96. But Fort Wayne guard Joe Young, who was fouled intentionally, drained both free throws to ice the game.
Fort Wayne, the affiliate of the Indiana Pacers, snaps a two-game losing skid to improve to 8-5. Grand Rapids, the affiliate of the Detroit Pistons, falls to 5-7.
Young, who is on assignment from the Indiana Pacers, finished with 17 points. He was followed by Terran Pettaway (13), Marcus Simmons (11) and Shayne Whittington (10).
Christmas, the reigning D-League Player of the Week, played most of the second half with five fouls. The 6-foot-9 forward out of Syracuse, had eight rebounds and a blocked shot.
Hilliard, a guard out of Villanova, led Grand Rapids with a game-high 23 points. Center Henry Sims had a double-double with 22 points and a season-high 16 rebounds. It’s the third double-double of the season for the former Georgetown standout. Devin Ebanks added 11 points and six rebounds.
Christmas scored nine points in the second quarter and helped the Mad Ants to a 52-49 lead at halftime.
Late in the second quarter, Lorenzo Brown got an offensive tip-dunk off a Dinwiddie missed shot to give Grand Rapids a 41-40 lead, their first lead of the game.
Grand Rapids scored the final seven points of the first quarter. Branden Dawson picked off a pass and sprinted the other way for an uncontested dunk. Then Ryan Boatright hit a fall-away 3-pointer as the buzzer sounded ending the first quarter to cut Fort Wayne’s lead to 29-25.
Guards Spencer Dinwiddie and and Hilliard were assigned to Grand Rapids by the Detroit Pistons on Saturday. Dinwiddie, who was drafted by Detroit out of Colorado, had seven points and two assists.
Young, who was drafted in 2015 out of Oregon, was assigned to Fort Wayne on Friday.

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