GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Jamel Morris and Landry Nnoko combined for 51 points as the Grand Rapids Drive (11-10) got back over .500 by winning their fourth consecutive game, 113-95 over the Maine Red Claws (10-9) at home on Friday night. Morris scored 26 points, tied for the game high with Maine’s Trey Davis, and Nnoko had 25 points and eight rebounds.
The 18-point victory was Grand Rapids’ largest victory margin all year, and only their second by double-digit points. They improved to 7-4 on the season at home. Marcus Thornton, playing in his second game as a member of the Drive, was the only other player for Grand Rapids aside from Morris and Nnoko in double figures. He scored 14 points off the bench. Speedy Smith also continued to make an impact for the Drive with nine points, four rebounds and seven assists.
In addition to Davis’ 26 points, five rebounds and six assists, the Red Claws got 21 points and eight rebounds from Jabari Bird. Andrew White and LJ Peak had 10 points each and Devin Williams was the game’s leading rebounder, pulling down 11.
The game’s four lead changes and two ties all came in the first quarter, as the Drive got their lead up to 14 at halftime with a 35-26 second quarter and led by as many as 29 points early in the fourth quarter. Morris registered a plus-26 rating on the night for the Drive and Marcus Simmons was a similarly stellar plus-25.
The two teams did not shoot all that differently from each other from the field or three-point range, but the Drive did manage to shoot 20 free throws against 13 by the Red Claws. They also had slight advantages in rebounding and turnovers, grabbing four more rebounds and turning the ball over five fewer times than their opposition.
The Drive will have a small break until they take on Maine again for their next game, again at the DeltaPlex on December 28. The Red Claws play the Windy City Bulls tomorrow on the road before the December 28 tilt.