The Wisconsin Herd (7-1), the NBA G League affiliate of the Milwaukee Bucks, extended their franchise-record winning streak to seven after beating the Delaware Blue Coats (3-4) 124-119 on Saturday night inside 76ers Fieldhouse.
A season-high seven Herd players scored in double figures, including four players who tallied 10 or more points off the bench. Rayjon Tucker poured in a season-high 30 points on 9-of-14 shooting, and D.J. Hogg tallied 17 points, six rebounds and three assists. Luke Maye recorded 16 points and seven rebounds, while Shannon Bogues and Brandon McCoy totaled 12 points apiece. Trevor Lacey was perfect from the field (4-of-4 FGs) and posted a season-high 11 points, and Jaylen Adams pitched in with 11 points, eight assists and three steals.
Jared Brownridge led the way for Delaware, tallying 23 points and a game-high five three-pointers. Zhaire Smith, who was assigned to Delaware from the Philadelphia 76ers, registered 18 points and seven rebounds, while Xavier Munford, the Herd’s all-time leading scorer, posted a stat line of 15 points, six rebounds, seven assists and three blocked shots. Isaiah Miles collected 14 points off the bench, and Haywood Highsmith added 12 points of his own. Norvel Pelle registered the lone double-double of the game and had 10 points, 12 rebounds and two blocks.
Saturday’s contest featured two of the more prolific offenses in the G League. Entering the game, the Blue Coats ranked first in scoring average at 125.7 points, while the Herd ranked sixth at 117.0 points per contest. As anticipated, offense was plentiful at the outset as the two teams combined for 71 points in the opening 12 minutes. Wisconsin scored six of the first eight points to begin the game, but Delaware promptly responded by rattling off 11 straight points to go up 13-6. The Blue Coats led by nine on a couple occasions, and as a team, Delaware shot 58 percent from the floor. Miles served as the catalyst scoring 12 first quarter points, while Hogg paced all Herd players with 10 points in the frame. Despite the Blue Coats efficiency on offense, Wisconsin closed the period by scoring the final six points of the stanza. In total, the Herd surrendered a season-high 37 first quarter points but trailed by just three at the end of the period.
The start of the second quarter belonged to the Herd as they scored the first dozen points of the period. Dating back to the first quarter, Wisconsin scored 18 unanswered points and turned a nine-point deficit into a nine-point lead. Delaware made just two field goals in the opening six minutes of the quarter, and a result, the Herd managed to extend their lead to 18 with 5:59 left to play in the half. The 18-point lead served as Wisconsin’s largest of the night, but following a Blue Coats timeout, Delaware used a 7-0 run to cut the Herd lead to 11. The Blue Coats inched closer and pulled to within single digits after ending the first half on a mini 6-0 spurt. For the period, Wisconsin outscored the Blue Coats by 10, shot a steady 56 percent from the field, 63 percent from three and led 72-65 at the intermission.
The third quarter commenced with the Herd tallying the first four points of the frame on back-to-back buckets by Tucker and Jemerrio Jones. Wisconsin regained a double-digit advantage after a McCoy layup, which forced another Delaware timeout at the 4:07 mark. The Blue Coats, however, wouldn’t go away, and with under a minute to play, Delaware pulled to within five on a long ball by Brownridge. In response, Maye countered with a three-pointer of his own to give the Herd an eight-point lead and some breathing room. With seven seconds remaining in the quarter, Brownridge connected on a pullup jumper and made it a 97-91 game heading into the final 12 minutes.
After making it a two-point game, Wisconsin created some distance and used an extended 10-3 run to make it a nine-point game. The Blue Coats were unable to tie or take the lead, and the Herd led for the final 34 minutes and some change. Tucker capped his career night by shooting for 4-of-6 in the period and led all players with 10 fourth quarter points. Wisconsin shot 50 percent in the frame, and after making timely free throws down the stretch, the Herd secured a 124-119 victory.
With the win, Wisconsin is now 4-2 all-time against the Blue Coats and 3-0 against the Atlantic Division this season. Additionally, the Herd are 5-0 on the road and 3-1 in back-to-backs, including 2-0 on the back end.
After completing a perfect road trip (4-0), the Herd will travel back to Oshkosh, WI and have a couple days off before returning to action on Nov. 29 against the Erie BayHawks. Tip-off on Friday is set for 7:00pm CT inside Menominee Nation Arena.