LONG ISLAND, NY — The College Park Skyhawks used a 35-point second quarter and a big night from Marcus Derrickson to pick up their first franchise win on Monday night, beating the Long Island Nets 120-109 on the road. With the win, the Skyhawks improve to 1-1 on the season. Video highlights of the game can be found here.
After a sluggish first quarter saw the visitors down by seven at the end of 12 minutes, College Park settled in, going on a 9-3 run to begin the second. After a Flagrant One foul was assessed to the Nets, Charlie Brown, Jr. knocked down the penalty shot, good for two points, and Derrickson hit a three on the next possession to help give the Skyhawks a 58-50 lead heading into the half.
The two teams traded threes throughout the third quarter, but it was Derrickson and Brandon Goodwin who took over to put College Park up by as many as 12 in the third. The Nets went on a quick run to pull within four, but Derrickson answered, finishing an and-one to help his team regain momentum. Long Island finished the quarter strong, scoring five points in six seconds off a lay-in by Jahmal McCurry and a buzzer-beating three from C.J. Williams to cut the lead to four. The home team refused to go away quietly, pulling within one with just under six minutes to play, but Derrickson once again came up clutch, hitting his fifth three of the night and sparking a 5-0 run that would put the game out of reach for the Nets.
Derrickson led the way for College Park with 31 points on 5-14 shooting from beyond the arc to go with nine rebounds. Goodwin added 27 points and nine assists, while Brown, Jr. added a double-double of 11 points and 13 rebounds. Armoni Brooks and Mark Ogden, Jr. made an impact off the bench, adding nine and seven points in the first half, respectively. On the night, Brooks finished with 12 points and Ogden, Jr. with 9. Tahjere McCall enjoyed his first game back to his old home court, adding nine points in the win, while Jordan Sibert contributed eight. As a team, College Park went 16-42 from deep (38%) and committed just 11 turnovers on the night. Deng Adel led the Nets with 27 points.
“It was a great team win,” said head coach Noel Gillespie. “I’m proud of how we competed, and the entire roster contributed. We shared the ball and took care of the ball. We had 27 assists and 11 turnovers and put pressure on the Nets on the defensive end. Everyone is excited, our staff, our players, and we’re excited to continue building on this.”
The Skyhawks make stops in Lakeland (FL) and Ft. Wayne (IN) on Nov. 16 and 18, respectively, before taking their home court for the first time on Nov. 21. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Gateway Center Arena @ College Park against the Delaware Blue Coats. For more information on the Skyhawks inaugural season and to register for updates, please visit CPSkyhawks.com. Fans can stay up to date on team news by following @CPSkyhawks on Twitter and Instagram.