The Canton Charge topped the Santa Cruz Warriors, 104-85, for their largest margin of victory to date this season at the Kaiser Permanente Arena on Saturday night. The win improved Canton’s mark to 10-5 on the season, while Santa Cruz fell to 10-7.
Kevin Jones nailed his first six attempts from the field to start the game, scoring 12 of Canton’s first 24 points. The Charge as a team hit 13-of-17 attempts (77%) in the first to pull ahead for a 35-24 lead. Bo Spencer pitched in 10 points of his own off the bench in the quarter.
Canton pulled ahead by as many as 18 in the second with continued offensive efficiency and thorough distribution of the basketball. The visitors assisted on 17 of 25 first half buckets and took a 65-52 lead into the intermission. Santa Cruz hung tough by posting 24 of their 28 second quarter points in the paint. Michael Lee netted 13 points on 6-of-7 shooting off the bench for Canton in the second period alone.
The Charge came out in the third and immediately initiated a 14-4 run that included forcing five Warrior turnovers to take their largest lead of the night at 78-53. Canton’s third-ranked scoring defense held Santa Cruz to just 14 points in the quarter and held an 84-66 advantage heading into the fourth.
Trailing 88-69 with 9:37 left in the game, the Warriors cut it to single digits with a 10-0 run over the next 3:15. That is as close as they would get, however, as the Charge closed the game on a 16-6 run of their own to never relinquish their lead that was originally gained at the 9:04 mark in the first quarter.
For Canton, Jones finished with 19 points on 9-of-18 shooting with nine rebounds in 28 minutes. Jorge Gutierrez displayed an all-around effort of 18 points on 6-of-10 shooting with nine rebounds, seven assists and one block in 36 minutes. Spencer scored 17 points on 6-of-12 shooting in 29 minutes. Shane Edwards added seven points, 13 rebounds and three steals in 38 minutes.
Santa Cruz was paced by Cameron Jones’ 18 points on 8-of-15 shooting with four assists in 32 minutes. Dwayne Dedmon added a double-double of 11 points and 11 boards in 30 minutes. Hilton Armstrong scored 11 points on 5-of-9 shooting with eight rebounds and two blocks in 30 minutes. Dominic McGuire scored 16 points on 7-of-12 shooting with six rebounds in 27 minutes of relief.
The Charge will be featured in the first of their two matchups at the 2014 NBA Development League Showcase against the Idaho Stampede on Monday, January 6th at 1:00 p.m. Fans can follow all of the action with live stats and a live YouTube stream of the game on CantonCharge.com.
Fans can stay up-to-date on team news by following the team at: @CantonCharge on Twitter at www.twitter.com/CantonCharge and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CantonCharge.