Island Storm forwards pace win over Moncton in front of record crowd

Charles Reid
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The bigs were big time in the Island Storm's 120-104 win over the Moncton Miracles on Sunday in Charlottetown.

Power forwards Brian Addison (26 points, 10 rebounds) and Tirrell Baines (13 points, eight rebounds) paced the Storm in the National Basketball League of Canada game, sending a record crowd of 3,205 home happy from the Eastlink Centre. 


Good news for the Storm after head coach Joe Salerno charged the pair, and Robert Nortmann, with replacing Nick Evans' 13 points and eight boards after the four-year centre left the team earlier this week to return to post-secondary school in the United States.

And it proved better news knowing the Storm faced Moncton's top big man in Thomas Granado, who the Storm front line contained to his season average of 13 points.

"Nick Evans was big part of tis team. Everybody knew they had to step up. We had to go out and get this win," said Addison, who went 11-for-15 from the field, 3-of-4 from the foul line and hit a three-pointer.

The Storm also missed point guard Josiah Turner, out after dental surgery. Both moves meant the Storm played with 10 players instead of the usual 12. 

The win ups the Storm's record to 8-14, last in the Atlantic Division, while third-place Moncton went to 9-13.

The Storm controlled the game throughout, surrendering the lead just three times while countering Moncton's high-octane transition game. It led 30-26 after the first quarter and, thanks to a 14-4, second-quarter run, nabbed 58-48 edge at the half.

In the third, the Storm weathered a pushback from the Miracles, which tied the game 67-67 midway through the quarter, and guard Terry Thomas' two-pointer spurred a 13-0 run for the Storm en route to an 89-80 advantage after three stanzas.

The Miracles never regained its edge in the fourth, getting outscored 31-24, and the Storm closed out the win despite the short bench.

"Moncton stresses the transition game. If you get to the ball, you can stop it early and (we did that)," said Addison. "Coach did a good job of subbing us in and out and keeping us fresh."

Storm point guard Malcolm Grant drained 19 points and dished out a game-high 10 assists while

Thomas finished with 18 points and 10 boards.

James Justice led Moncton with 21 points and Dexter Strickland had 15 points. Tydran Beaty grabbed a team-high eight rebounds.

Evans' rights were traded Saturday to the London Lightning for centre Chad Posthumus, who's expected to arrive on P.E.I. later this week. 

The six-foot, 10-inch, 260-pound Posthumus, a Winnipeg, Man. native, averaged 11 points and 6.5 rebounds per game with a 55 per cent field goal percentage in 22 games with London.

Next up, the Storm hosts the Halifax Hurricanes on Friday. Game time is 7 p.m. at Eastlink Centre.

Sunday, the Miracles matched the contract offer the Storm had made on Saturday to former guard Shawn Van Zant and signed away him from the Storm. 

Van Zant played with Moncton last year, but signed with the Belfast Star of Irish Premier League this season.

Organizations: Eastlink Centre, National Basketball League of Canada, London Lightning Irish Premier League

Geographic location: Moncton, Charlottetown, United States P.E.I. Winnipeg Canada

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