ST. CATHARINES, ON – The Saint John Riptide kicked off a five-game, 13 day road trip through the province of Ontario to visit all five central division teams. First on the docket was the Niagara River Lions on Sunday afternoon as former River Lion Chris Commons and Canadian Alex Campbell made their Riptide debuts.
As these two squads met for just the second time this season, the game started off as a tightly contested affair with both sides eclipsing the 2o-point mark in the first 12 minutes of the game. It was the visitors gaining the upper hand after one quarter leading 26-21.
The second quarter played out in a similar fashion but the Riptide did their best to expand their lead before the halftime break. Gabe Freeman paced the offence while Horace Wormley dished out dime after dime and the Riptide widened the gap to 13 points, 61-48 at the half.
In the third quarter the River Lions managed to outscore the Riptide, something they hadn’t done all night. Kirk Williams Jr. lead the way as the home side tried to rally in front of their fans. Despite their best efforts, they were only able to trim their deficit by two points with Saint John maintaining an 11-point edge at the end of the third frame. Niagara started to push back in the fourth but the Riptide weren’t having any of it. A late alley-oop dunk by Gabe Freeman was the dagger as the Riptide sealed the deal on a 117-106 road win.
Freeman was the high man for the Riptide scoring 28 points and pulling down seven rebounds. Horace Wormely continued to prove why size does not matter finishing with 17 points, seven rebounds, and nine assists. Olu Famutimi also had 14 points while Anthony Stover, Brian Addison, and Darin Mency all contributed 12 apiece. Williams Jr lead the River Lions with 31 points.
Next up the Riptide travel to Mono, Ontario to take on the Orangeville A’s on Wednesday, April 5th. Tip-off is 7pm at the Athlete Institute.