Hustle finish series sweep of Oklahoma City

Photo: Kenneth Lofton Jr. (6) shown in action earlier this season at the Landers Center. Lofton scored 24 points and had 15 rebounds Wednesday. (Bob Bakken/desotocountynews.com)

The Memphis Hustle (14-5) defeated the Oklahoma City Blue (7-14) 106-98 on Wednesday afternoon as the Hustle swept the two-game series against the Blue at the Paycom Center.

Kenneth Lofton Jr. led the Hustle, with a game-high 24 points and 15 rebounds to secure his eighth double-double of the regular season. On assignment from the Grizzlies, Ziaire Williams totaled 16 points and seven rebounds. David Roddy finished with 15 points and six rebounds. Dakota Mathias chipped in 14 points and five rebounds off the bench. Jake LaRavia netted 13 points and five rebounds. Jacob Gilyard dished out nine assists for the second consecutive game, along with a career-high six steals.

Ousmane Dieng paced the Blue with a 19-point, 11-rebound double-double. Olivier Sarr scored a season-high 17 points and 10 rebounds to secure his second double-double of the season. Aaron Wiggins added 14 points, six rebounds and eight assists in his first game with the Blue this season. Tre Mann finished with 12 points, five rebounds and 4 assists.

The Hustle used a 24-9 first quarter run to take an early double-digit lead against the Blue. The Blue used a strong second quarter to cut the Hustle lead down to two points at the halftime break. The Blue went on a quick 7-0 run to start the second half before the Hustle closed the third quarter on a 29-15 run to create some separation heading into the fourth quarter. The Blue cut the Hustle lead down to 98-96 with 3:03 left in the game before the Hustle closed on an 8-2 run to secure the victory.

The Hustle were able to limit the Blue to a season-low 21.6 percent shooting from beyond the arc, while also scoring 23 points off of Oklahoma City turnovers. The Hustle tallied a season high 54 rebounds, including 12 offensive rebounds to give the Hustle 13 second chance points.

The two-game series sweep against the Blue has the Hustle on a four-game win streak heading into the NBA G League All-Star break. The Hustle enter the break with the best record in the Western Conference. The Hustle will return home to the Landers Center after the break to face off against the G League Ignite on Thursday, Feb. 23 at 7 p.m. Central time.  

Bob Bakken

Bob Bakken is the most recognized and most trusted name in DeSoto County news and sports reporting, as readers continue to express their appreciation for his accuracy and fairness in the stories he writes. Bob is also heard on 95.3 The Rebel twice a week with sports updates and high school football play-by-play broadcasts in the fall. A former newspaper editor and writer, his award-winning background also includes television news producing, sports media relations, and radio broadcasting.

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