After an eight-game road trip, the Canton Charge returned to the Canton Memorial Civic Center on Monday afternoon for a thrilling contest with the Maine Red Claws. When the smoke had cleared it was a notch for the Canton Charge in the win column as they fought to a 99-94 victory. This improved the Canton Charge to 14-8 while Maine dropped to 9-13. The game was also the eleventh time this season (out of 14 games) that the Canton Charge has held their opponents to under 100 points. Canton boasts the second ranked scoring defense in the D-League allowing an average of just 97.8 points per game.
The4 Red Claws pulled out to an early lead by hitting 11-of-18 shots from the field for 61%. Maine also marked 10 assists out of 11 buckets in the opening quarter with eight out of nine players having at least one assist. At the buzzer it was 30-26 in favor of the Red Claws.
Canton fought back in the second quarter with a 12-4 run in the first 6:05 to take a two point lead by forcing six turnovers. The quarter was fast paced as there were four lead changes and two ties but at the half Maine pulled ahead 50-46 after chris Babb hit all net with a 30 foot miracle at the buzzer.
The Charge managed to keep abreast of the Red Claws in the third and managed to tie it up at 60-60 with 6:52 left in the quarter. They then went on a 7-2 run for just over three minutes to pull ahead 67-62. Superior scoring managed to have the Charge outscore the Red Claws 31-23 as they began the fourth with a 77-73 lead.
The game was far from over as Maine fought off a seven point deficit and managed to even the score with a 7-0 run that included four forced turnovers and four misses by Canton in a span of 3:22 thus tying the game at 83-83. Canton took a timeout and came back refreshed with a 8-0 run of their own stretching the lead to its higest of the afternoon at 91-83 with just 3:42 remaining.
Down by three with 13 seconds left in the game, Maine had a chance to tie when an errant three pointer fell helplessly off the rim. Two free throws later at the Canton end sealed the game for the books
Shane Edwards poured in a season-high 28 points on 13-of-22 shooting with seven rebounds, four assists and two steals in 35 minutes. Jorge Gutierrez added 11 points, four rebounds, three assists and two steals in 29 minutes. Kevin Jones scored 12 points on 6-of-12 shooting with four rebounds in 23 minutes. The Charge cleaned the glass on their own end for 20 offensive rebounds to the Red Claws’ three.
Babb paced Maine for 20 points on 7-of-12 shooting with eight rebounds and seven assists in 40 minutes. Chris Wright finished with 20 points, two steals, two blocks and eight turnovers in 31 minutes. Former Akron Zip Zeke Marshall came off the bench to score nine points and grab three rebounds in 20 minutes. The Red Claws surrendered the ball 22 times on the afternoon resulting in 22 Charge points.
The Charge are back at the Civic Center on Wednesday, January 22 at 7:00 p.m. against the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, with tickets starting as low as $7! For a look at special gameday promotions, to purchase single game tickets or for all general ticket information, fans can call 1-866-444-1944 or visitwww.CantonCharge.com.