COLLEGE PARK — Between College Park and Erie both teams have been tied to each other for quite some time.
In regards to the College Park Skyhawks, it’s not like the new NBA G-League franchise was bad, they were just slower to start than the Bayhawks. Add in the fact that Erie was familiar with most of the Skyhawks including the coaching staff, it was an exercise in beating themselves Wednesday night.
College Park did just that 126-111. But it wasn’t a rivalry in the slightest, it was more about respect for head coach Noel Gillespie. Even though it was put into perspective that Cat Barber, Sanjay Lumpkin and Jordan Sibert each came from Erie.
“There’s not necessarily a rivalry. For myself and my staff, you look at the scoreboard and you see a Bayhawks uniform and you see the Bayhawks on the scoreboard it takes an adjustment some times because we played 50 games with them last year,” Gillespie said. “I’d say it’s different or unique but it’s not necessarily a rivalry. We were happy to be there and to be in the area last season. The people that still run the office were great to us and continue to be great to us and continue to do a great job.”
In the first quarter, it was all Erie and the issue of shooting was a problem once again at the start. Rushed shots led to the Skyhawks making on eight of their 22 attempted shots but what really stuck out was the inability to grab rebounds.
Erie pulled in 16 total rebounds while the Skyhawks only managed seven but the second quarter was different for College Park. They were down 35-21 but it wasn’t a crushing deficit.
Erie was shooting poorly and rebounding wasn’t there for the Bayhawks. Meanwhile, College Park had the offense and the rebounding needed to claw back into contention. What also stood out was the fact that College Park went away from the deep shots that got them in trouble in the first quarter.
But the 30 point quarter only managed to tie the game into halftime. Erie was still in contention to take a win away from College Park if they had another good quarter. Nick Ward led the Skyhawks with 12 points during the second quarter but the game was far from over.
Erie held fast in the third quarter. College Park only managed to score 36 but Erie stayed right in line with their 33 points. Part of it was due to Jalen Adams who knocked in 10 points.
But in the fourth quarter, it was anybodys game. Skyhawks led 88-82 at the start of the fourth but with how both sides were playing, it was up in the air as to who would take the win.
However, late in the game, College Park pulled away as Erie was only able to muster 27 points in the final quarter of play.
Ward led the Skyhawks with 25 points and 10 rebounds while Cat Barber also had a double-double with 11 assists and 22 points. Armoni Brooks pulled in 15 points with Taj McCall picking up another 14. Kenny Gabriel scored 13 while Sibert had 10.