FORT WAYNE, IN, December 26, 2017 – The Westchester Knicks (15-8), the official NBA G League affiliate of the New York Knickerbockers, had two of its players notch career-high scoring in a 129-116 road win against the Fort Wayne Mad Ants (11-9), the Indiana Pacers’ affiliate.
Knicks affiliate player Xavier Rathan-Mayes poured in a career-high 33 points on 13-for-21 shooting on top of six rebounds, five steals, and three assists. Forward Paul Watson, starting in place of an injured Isaiah Hicks, hit 8-of-11 including 4-of-5 from beyond the arc to etch his new career-high. Knicks affiliate and two-time NBA G League Player of the Week Trey Burke finished with 28 points and four assists, Nigel Hayes with 14 points and five rebounds, while Two-Way player Luke Kornet supplied 16 points, eight rebounds, and seven assists.
Walter Lemon Jr. and DeQuan Jones paced Fort Wayne with 22 points each, Lemon Jr. adding seven assists while Jones grabbed 10 rebounds for a double-double. Stephan Hicks was just shy of a double-double of his own, contributing 20 points with nine rebounds. From the pine, Trey McKinney-Jones contributed 19 points and Ben Moore finished with 13.
Westchester’s Luke Kornet put the first two points in on the first possession in the game, the beginning of what would be a Knicks reign. Though its lead stayed within five for the first half of the first quarter, Westchester broke away with a 14-6 run to take its first double-digit lead of the game and headed into the second with an eight-point lead. The Knicks held its comfortable lead until the Mad Ants used an 8-0 run to come back within one, but Westchester answered back with a 12-2 run of its own to push the lead back to double-digits. By the end of the first half, Fort Wayne trailed by eight.
The Mad Ants gave its all in the third quarter, actually outscoring the Knicks by one point. But to Fort Wayne’s chagrin, Westchester’s Trey Burke also came alive in the third, the guard scoring 11 points as a prequel to his 17 in the fourth. Coupled with Rathan-Mayes’ 14 in the final quarter – a combined 48 points in the second half for the duo – the Knicks proved to be too much for the battling Mad Ants as the home team ultimately fell by 13 points.
The Westchester Knicks will return back to New York, but remain on the road, to face the Long Island Nets, the Brooklyn Nets’ affiliate, on Friday, Dec. 29 at 7:00 p.m. ET. The game will be streamed live on Twitch, the world’s leading social video service and community for gamers with 15 million daily active users.