SUMMERSIDE — It was the Joe Posey Show on Friday night.
Posey hit five three-pointers in the fourth quarter to lead the Saint John Mill Rats to a 119-113 come-from-behind victory over the Summerside Storm.
“I got in a little rhythm in the second half, and I just tried to ride it out for the rest of the game,” said Posey, who finished with 22 points in the National Basketball League of Canada contest.
It was the second win in as many nights for the Mill Rats, who edged the Halifax Rainmen 98-97 on Antonio Burks’ three-pointer at the buzzer on Thursday.
The win improved Saint John’s record to 6-7 while the Storm fell to 7-7 in the parity-filled Atlantic Division. The other two teams in the division are Halifax (7-6) and Moncton (8-8).
“We were trying to build on last night’s (Thursday) win and try to get on a roll,” said Posey. “I was excited about it, but knew it was going to be a tough game.”
Before 2,016 fans at Eastlink Arena, the Storm jumped out to a 9-2 lead, which prompted Mill Rats head coach David Cooper to call a timeout. Saint John responded with a 7-0 run to tie the game 9-9, and the Mill Rats led 28-27 after the first quarter.
Anthony Anderson scored 14 of his game-high 26 points for the Mill Rats in the first quarter.
The lead went back-and-forth in the second quarter, which ended with the Mill Rats going into the intermission ahead 59-55.
The Storm outscored the Mill Rats 30-20 in the third quarter, including a 9-3 run to close out the period, for an 85-79 lead. The Storm extended the lead to eight points, 87-79, early in the fourth quarter, but then Possey took over. He hit back-to-back three-pointers to bring the Mill Rats to within two points, and those two shots turned out to be a big turning point in the game.
Posey, who brought the Mill Rats to within 91-90 with his third three-pointer of the quarter, connected for two more back-to-back threes to give the Mill Rats a 101-95 lead with 6:12 remaining. Saint John would not look back.
The Mill Rats led 109-101 with two minutes left, and any time it looked like the Storm may start to make a run Saint John had an answer. Jerice Crouch and Sheray Thomas each sank a pair of free throws in the game’s final minute to put the game out of reach.
The Mill Rats outscored the Storm 40-28 in the fourth quarter.
Melvin Council quietly poured in 22 points for the Mill Rats.
Brandon Robinson scored 20 points in his Storm debut while Greg Plummer sank 19. Ralphy Holmes and Antonio Ballard each poured in 14 points.
The Storm host the Halifax Rainmen on Boxing Day at 2 p.m.