It took triple overtime for the Windsor Express to defeat the Montreal Jazz 124 -121 in Quebec completing the longest contest played by any team in the National Basketball League of Canada’s short history.
Mike Helms tied a league record with 40 for the highest points scored in a single game. With the win Windsor clinched their first road series of the year going two and one. Guard Darren Duncan scored 25 and Chris Commons added 21 to go along with 8 rebounds. Montreal’s native, Kevin Loiselle, had a double double in his trip back home with 15 points and 10 rebounds.
All wasn’t peachy on this trip. After knocking of last year’s champs Windsor headed into a matchup with the Jazz and lost 104-98. Considering this was Montreal’s first win all year, the Express clearly under estimated their opponent.
Windsor responded by whooping the Jazz by 19 in the following contest as Lester Prosper had his best showing as a member of the Express. The centre netted a team-high 25 points, 10 rebounds and added 5 blocks. After being down one at half Windsor outscored their opponent by 20 in the third frame and never looked back. Riding some hot shooting from Chris Common and Mike Helms who combined to go eight of 12 from long range.
Back in Ontario, Windsor faced off against London for fifth time in 10 games. A close contest that was put out of reach when two free throws by London with eight seconds left propelled them to a 101-96 win over the Express. Without starting point guard, Darren Duncan in the lineup Windsor got help from their bench as seven players scored 10 points or more.
University of Windsor graduate Isaac Kuon had a season-high 15 points going three for five from beyond the arch. In his first start with the Express Stefan Bonneau led the team with 19 points, filling the shoes of guard Darren Duncan quite well.
As the season moves forward a healthy Windsor roster can match up with any in the NBL. But in order to climb above 500, the team must begin playing constant basketball every night. Not just when they feel like it.