St. John's, NL — The St. John's Edge were victorious in Game 1 of the Central Division Finals. In front of an electric crowd of 4,227, the Edge took it to the Titans to pick up the 101-94 win.
This game was filled with a lot of big moments, none bigger than when Carl English took the floor for the first time in over 2 and a half months. The crowd stood to their feet and the sound was deafening at Mile One Centre. English would put on a performance that matches the reaction from the crowd.
Into the first quarter of this one and it was an aggressive start, to say the least. The Titans would pick up 3 quick fouls, with all 3 fouls very tough fouls to say the least. It was back and forth for the majority of the first, with Glen Davis pacing the Edge offence taking it down low and owning the paint against the KW big men.
As the quarter progressed, the pace would pick up and the Titans would show off their range with Damon Lynn hitting two consecutive three's at the 4-minute mark of the quarter to extend the KW lead to 10. The tide would begin to turn when Carl English drained his first triple, then buried two free throws to pull the Edge to within just 7 at the end of the first (28-21 KW Titans).
Into the second quarter, a small 5-0 run would pull the Edge to within just one point. After a Glen Davis layup and a Russell Byrd three, Carl English would drain a corner triple to tie the game at 41.
With the quarter ending, the Edge would get another triple from Carl English to put them in front 50-48. Following an exchange of baskets, Olu Ashaolu would hit a layup to cap off the quarter and send the Edge into the break with a 54-50 lead.
Coming out of the break, the two teams would go shot for shot early. In total, the game would see 17 lead changes with about 5 of those coming in the first few minutes of the third quarter. The Titans would get two big threes from Ed Horton, but both were answered by Murphy Burnatowski to pull the Edge within 3 with around 7 minutes to go in the quarter.
At the three-minute mark of the quarter, the Edge would go on another little 5-0 run and jump back in front on the strength of a couple of Glen Davis free-throws and an acrobatic layup by Dez Lee. Then Kyle Johnson would leave his mark in his first game as an Edge player by hitting a jumper in the lane and burying his two free-throws to send it to the fourth with the Edge leading 78-76.
The final quarter was a nail-biter throughout with the fans into every possession. It would begin with two more lead changes, then Isaiah Tate II would start to widen the gap for the Edge. He would hit two straight three-pointers to put St. John's in front by 5.
With 3:14 left in the quarter, the Titans would tie it up at 92, then the Edge would take the lead on a Murphy Burnatowski dunk and not look back. Down the stretch, they would also get some stellar defence, with a key play coming when Glen Davis dove for a steal knocking it off of the KW player forcing the turnover and giving the Edge the 101-94 win.
This night was another full team effort to pick up the win. The Edge finished with 18 assists as a team and outrebounded the Titans on route to the victory.
As we noted previously, the night was also a big comeback story for Carl English who went off for 22 points on 4-of-8 shooting from beyond the arc to put the Edge ahead in the series 1-0.
For the Titans, they were led by Damon Lynn who had 23 points in the loss.
Game 2 is set for Monday at 7:00 PM at Mile One Centre. This is one you will not want to miss. Tickets are available at the box office, by calling 576-7657, or online at www.mileonecentre.com.
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