Story by: Austin Deuville
Prior to tip off, Audley Stephenson, Deputy Commissioner of the National Basketball League of Canada (NBLC) was in attendance and presented Head Coach, Joe Salerno with the 2019 Coach of the Year award. Mr. Stephenson also proceeded to present Wayne McCullough with the Outstanding Community Service award due to his outstanding personality, involvement, and impact within the community of Moncton.
It's the 2019 NBLC Finals! A position and an atmosphere that the Moncton Magic have never experienced in franchise history. That being said, the Magic found themselves trailing late on their home floor, 86-79. However, Moncton put together a 24-8 scoring run in the final five minutes of regulation, capturing Game 1 with a 103-94 win over the St. Johns Edge.
This duo needs a name… Trey Kell and Billy White record near triple-doubles and combine for 49 points. Kell finished with 29 points, 9 rebounds, 8 assists and found himself at the free-throw line twelve times, making eleven. Player of the Game, Billy White finished with 20 points, as well as 9 rebounds and 8 assists. Including a layup, offensive rebound, and bigtime finish to regain the lead and momentum for the Magic. Speaking of momentum, Marcus Lewis had 8 of his 12 points in the final five minutes of the 4thquarter. Lewis also showed his importance on the defensive end, recording 2 steals and 2 blocks. Open or contested, it doesn't matter… Jason Calliste came off the bench and did what he's known best for, knocking down shots. Calliste chimed in with 11 points and 3 rebounds.
For the short-handed Edge, Murphy Burnatowski picked up the scoring load, leading the way for St Johns with a game-high 30 points and 7 rebounds. The crafty Jarryn Skeete finished with 16 points, 9 rebounds and 4 assists. Olu Ashaolu left the game with an apparent left leg injury in the 3rdquarter and did not return. Ashaolu finished with 11 points. While Carl English contributed with 9 points and 5 assists.
Game 2 of the best of seven NBLC Finals between the Moncton Magic and St. Johns Edge commences on Saturday May 11that 7pm at the Avenir Centre. The Magic will be seeking a 2-0 series lead, while the Edge will seek to split the series 1-1 before heading to the rock for Game 3. Tune into NBLC Live for complete coverage throughout the Finals.
Moncton is #BallCrazy #4theChip
Tickets available online at: www.ticketmaster.ca
Subaru of Moncton Box office:1-506-962-4545
About MONCTON MAGIC Headquartered in Moncton, NB, the MONCTON MAGIC is a professional basketball organization that operates under a licensing agreement with the National Basketball League of Canada (NBLC). The team will play its games in a two-conference league with clubs located in the Provinces of Ontario and Atlantic Canada.