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Santa Cruz Spoils Potential Sweep, Ending Westchester’s Pacific Coast Streak

By Katie Hatch | December 17, 2017

SANTA CRUZ, CA, December 16, 2017 – The Westchester Knicks (13-6), the official NBA G League affiliate of the New York Knickerbockers, were unable to complete a Pacific Coast sweep as they fell 106-98 to the Santa Cruz Warriors (11-8), the Golden State Warriors’ affiliate, in the team’s final game on the West Coast.

 Knicks affiliate player Trey Burke notched his fourth 30-plus point game in a row, leading his team with 35 points to go with five rebounds and four steals. Billy Garrett came through off the bench, supplying 15 points, four rebounds and three assists. Knicks affiliate Xavier Rathan-Mayes also contributed 15 points, rounding it out with six rebounds and four assists. Two-Way player Isaiah Hicks was a force under the rim, grabbing 16 rebounds on top of eight points. On his twenty-third birthday, Nigel Hayes finished with 10 points and four rebounds.

Warriors Two-Way player Quinn Cook paced Santa Cruz with 30 points on top of five assists and four rebounds. Center Damian Jones poured in 20 points, completing a double-double with 15 rebounds to go with six assists. Forward Georges Niang provided 19 points with five each of rebounds assists, while former Knick Cleanthony Early finished with nine points. 

The two high-scoring NBA veterans carried the first quarter for the teams; Burke providing 11 for Westchester and Cook putting up 10 for Santa Cruz. The Warriors’ shots fell a bit better though, the home team outshooting the Knicks 65 to 32 percent. Westchester’s Garrett and Santa Cruz’s Niang matched for 10 points in the second, but Garrett’s teammates only managed to contribute an additional nine points, putting the Knicks down by 13 at the half.

Westchester came out of the locker room a better team, besting Santa Cruz by a point in the third as contributions became better-rounded. Still, the Knicks were down by 12 heading into the final twelve minutes. After going down by as many as 15 points, Westchester made it a one-possession game off an 8-1 run with just under a minute on the clock. That Burke pull-up jumper would be the final bucket made by the Knicks though, as the Warriors ultimately pulled out a 106-98 win.

 The Westchester Knicks return home for a trio of games next week beginning with a 7:00 p.m. matchup on Tuesday, Dec. 19 against the Salt Lake City Stars, the Utah Jazz’s affiliate. The game will be broadcast on MSG2 and streaming live on Twitch. Games on Twitch will include live fan commentary and cutting-edge interactive stats, co-streams, chat, the ability to earn loyalty points, and more.

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