After going 5-9 in the Showcase Cup, the Westchester Knicks faced off against the Grand Rapids Gold for the second game in a row. The records were reset following the Showcase Cup, so the Knicks brought a 0-1 record into Friday’s contest.
The Knicks were missing several of their key players in Jericho Sims, Luka Samanic and Tyler Hall. Brandon Goodwin, Brandon Williams and Myles Powell earned NBA deals and are not with the team.
After Grand Rapids scored the first basket, Westchester went on an 8-0 run behind a three from Blake Francis and V.J. King. It was a low scoring first quarter from both teams, as the Gold held a 23-14 lead. Grand Rapids had a good defensive quarter and held Westchester scoreless in the final two and half minutes of the opening quarter.
The Knicks put together an impressive 32-point second quarter and trailed their opponents 52-46. Blake Francis had the best quarter of his Westchester career, as he dropped 14 points and showcases his perimeter shooting in the first half. VJ King was making an impact in many ways and was doing a little bit of everything.
Grand Rapids controlled the third quarter and nearly maintained a double-digit lead for most of the quarter. Every time the Knicks inched closer to the Gold, the home team would string together baskets and increase their lead. While Grand Rapids had a 23-point lead in the final quarter, Westchester fought until the final buzzer and made a late comeback. The Knicks went on a 16-5 run and trailed 106-94 with 1:24 left in the game. Westchester couldn't overcome their 23-point deficit and suffered a 110-96 loss.
Blake Francis led Westchester with 26 points (4/10 3PT) and four assists. Jordan Allen finished with 21 points, four assists and two steals. Dewan Hernandez posted a double-double (21 points and 10 rebounds). VJ King totaled 16 points, 10 rebounds, five assists and two steals.
Westchester will be back in action on Monday against the Motor City Cruise. Tip off is at 7pm on the G League YouTube channel.