SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — Despite missing two of its best defenders, the Sioux Falls Skyforce (22-11) posted its best defensive effort in more than a month to earn a 111-101 victory over the Westchester Knicks (13-18) Tuesday night at the Sanford Pentagon.
With Okaro White and Briante Weber signing NBA contracts, the Knicks’ 101 points were the fewest by a Skyforce opponent since a 96-94 double overtime victory over the Northern Arizona Suns on Christmas Day. Sioux Falls also held Westchester to 42 percent from the floor.
It wasn’t all defense, though. Patrick Miller led the Skyforce with a career high-tying 32 points on 12-of-17 shooting to go with seven rebounds and six assists. Keith Benson added 17 points, 16 boards and three blocks for his NBA D-League-leading 20th double-double.
Knicks forward Damien Inglis scored 15 points in the first quarter to propel his team to a 29-27 lead after one. Sioux Falls tightened up on defense, though, and Inglis would score just five more points the rest of the way.
The Skyforce used a 12-3 run midway through the second quarter to take the lead at halftime. Sioux Falls then kept its foot on the gas, outscoring Westchester by 11 in the third quarter and pushed its lead to as many as 17 in the fourth to seal its second-consecutive victory.
Westchester was within four with 5:15 left in the third quarter, but a 14-3 Sioux Falls run over the next 3:58 gave the Skyforce a commanding 15-point lead that they never relinquished.