Birch Block Party and Drew Drops Dimes as Skyforce Swamp 87ers
Through the first five games of the season, the Sioux Falls Skyforce have yet to be bested on the road. It’s only a two-game sample, but the most recent example consists of the 115-103 victory over the Delaware 87ers.
Game one of the home schedule at the Bob Carpenter Center was not exactly what Delaware (3-2) had in mind. Facing a team that had won three of the first four on the road did not matter to the visiting Skyforce (3-2) as an early 4-2 deficit was erased quickly.
Khem Birch set the defensive tone by blocking 3 shots in the first 4 minutes of the game while Fuquan Edwin was scoring 10 points. By the middle of the first quarter the Sioux Falls lead expanded to 11 and hovered in the double digits through most of the game. The Sevens were unable to make headway as any run was stymied by a Skyforce fast break or 3 point shot.
Most impressively, the Skyforce shared the ball in tremendous fashion. The team’s twitter account published the postgame comments from Coach Phil Weber. "The whole team performance was great. We jumped on them early, we played hard, the intensity level was there. We had 34 assists which is an unbelievable number and that's hopefully going to be our identity going forward."
Birch’s final tally was strong on many fronts with 9-10 shooting to reach 20 points plus 11 rebounds, 6 blocks (see above clip), 4 steals and 4 assists. Edwin piled up good numbers, too with 22 points and 4 steals which compares favorably with A.J. Davis who notched 23 points, 5 rebounds and 5 steals. The assists were mostly in the care of Larry Drew II who dropped 11 (with 15 points and 7 rebounds) and Michael Williams with 9 (while also scoring 15). See Drew's exploits below there's a nice clip to see.
Delaware’s Ronald Roberts led the 87ers effort with 22 points and 12 rebounds with Melvin Johnson coming off the bench to score 20.
Sioux Falls continues their eastward swing with a Friday contest against the Erie BayHawks and the 87ers will retool for a home date with the Canton Charge also on Friday.