Hoffman Estates, IL – The Windy City Bulls began their third season with a 96-71 victory over the Lakeland Magic on Friday Night at Sears Centre Arena.
Four players scored in double figures for Windy City led by Tyler Ulis who poured in a game-high 25 points to go along with four rebounds and seven assists. Mychal Mulder tallied 14 points and eight rebounds, while Kaiser Gates added 13 points, six rebounds and two steals in a reserve role. Ferrakohn Hall pitched in with 11 points and six rebounds.
Four of the five Magic starters scored in double figures led by Troy Caupain who amassed 15 points, four rebounds and seven assists. Lakeland’s second Two-Way player, Amile Jefferson, recorded a 14-point, 11 rebound double-double, while BJ Johnson and Devin Davis had 11 points apiece.
After a defensive first quarter that featured four ties and eight lead changes, Windy City trailed by a basket, 21-19. Both teams combined to shoot 15 for 50 and 30 percent from the floor. However, Windy City would take advantage in the second period, racing out to a double-digit lead. Despite shooting just 38 percent in the quarter, the Bulls doubled up Lakeland and outscored them 28-14. After leading by as many as 14 and outgaining the Magic in every major statistical category, Windy City went into the intermission leading 47-35.
The second quarter momentum resurfaced in the third as the Bulls extended their lead to 20 points. Ulis exerted himself in the period, nearly matching his first half point total with 12 points in the frame. Windy City went to the foul line 10 times, shot 45 percent in the quarter and led 76-56 heading into the final 12 minutes.
Windy City went on to extend their lead to 23 points on a jump shot by Kaiser Gates. Lakeland was unable to trim the lead inside 19 and the Bulls collected their first win of the season in convincing fashion, 96-71.
The 71 points is the fewest allowed in franchise history, besting the 78-point performance against the Fort Wayne Mad Ants on Jan. 19, 2017. With the win, Windy City is now 2-1 all-time in season openers and 3-1 against Lakeland over the past two seasons.