Thursday, February 15, 2018 (LONDON, ON) – The London Lightning and the St. John's Edge battled momentum swings all game and the Lightning came away on top with a 116-103 win.
It was a battle of the top two teams in the NBL Central Division and head coach, Keith Vassell, knew team defense was a key reason the team got the win. "It was a defensive grind, I was really proud of the way we stuck to it defensively and then we shot the ball better in the second half and we stayed committed to getting the win. We grinded it out." Key players for the Lightning were in foul trouble early, causing the Bolts to use a variety of different lineups. "There's going to be ups and downs, I'm glad we were resilient, and when things didn't seem like they were going to come around, we made the plays we had to and it was a team effort. We went with two different shifts and the two different shifts were very effective through out the game."
After struggling from the floor in the first half the Lightning poured in 37 points in the third quarter and another 30 in the fourth. Kyle Johnson was a key piece of the turnaround in the second half. Johnson shot 50% from beyond the arch for 25 points, even though he struggled in the first half. "You have to keep shooting. We practice hard and in basketball you aren't going to make every shot but you know that if you keep shooting the ball, eventually it is going to go in. I have confidence in my shot, I have confidence in everybody else on the team's shots… we aren't worried about it. Plus, we played good defence. You know that if you aren't making shots, as long as you stop them from making shots; you are going to be in good shape at the end of the game. That was a big win, the battle of first place. We just wanted to try to set a tone and establish where we are in this league."
Foul trouble was an issue all night for the Bolts, causing lines to rotate throughout game. The Lightning saw scoring all across the stat sheet. Ryan Anderson and Garrett Williamson each added 17 while Marcus Capers chipped in 12.
The next London Lightning home game is Sunday, February 18th at two p.m. against the KW Titans. Sunday is the annual Kids Day with Libro Credit Union. Show your game ticket for early access at 11 a.m. for fun family activities. Tickets are available at www.lightningbasketball.ca or the Budweiser Gardens Box Office.