OSHKOSH, WI – The Wisconsin Herd (8-1), the NBA G League affiliate of the Milwaukee Bucks, extended its franchise-record winning streak to eight after defeating the Erie BayHawks (3-7) 133-115 on Friday night inside Menominee Nation Arena.
Six Herd players scored in double figures led by Jaylen Adams who tied his season-high with 27 points and added four rebounds, nine assists and two steals. For the fourth consecutive game, Rayjon Tucker scored 20 or more points and posted a stat line of 22 points, eight rebounds and two steals, while Milwaukee Bucks assignee, Dragan Bender, notched his third double-double of the season and tallied 19 points, 11 rebounds and season-highs in assists (six) and blocked shots (three). Cameron Reynolds added 18 points and six rebounds and Brandon McCoy totaled a season-high 15 points off the bench. Jemerrio Jones tied his career-high and grabbed 18 rebounds to go with a season-high 12 points.
Josh Gray, the NBA G League’s leading scorer, led all BayHawks players and poured in a game-high 31 points, five rebounds, 10 assists and four steals. Denver Nuggets assignee, Vlatko Čančar, added 29 points, seven rebounds, five assists and two steals, while Vitto Brown recorded 18 points and eight rebounds off the bench. Taren Sullivan had 12 points and five rebounds in a reserve role, and Aubrey Dawkins pitched in with 11 points.
The Herd began the contest by making three of its first four shots from the field and opened the game on an 8-0 run. Wisconsin scored 12 of the game’s first 17 points and led 12-5 within the first two and a half minutes. Despite trailing by as many as eight points, Erie strung together a run and took a 22-21 lead on a layup by Gray. The BayHawks led by as many as six points in the quarter, but by the end of the quarter, the Herd managed to even the score by totaling eight of the final 10 points in the frame.
In similar fashion to the first quarter, Wisconsin scored the first eight points of the second period. Bender knocked down back-to-back three-pointers, and in total, the Herd scored 12 unanswered points dating back to the opening stanza. Wisconsin grabbed a double-digit lead on a running layup by Tucker and led by as many as 19 points in the first half. For the quarter, the Herd outscored Erie by 16 and held the BayHawks to just 33 percent shooting. Tucker capped the first half with a three-pointer and a driving dunk, and Wisconsin led 66-50 at the intermission.
For the third consecutive period, the Herd began a quarter with a big run and posted the first 12 points of the second half. The spurt gave Wisconsin a 78-50 lead, which was its largest advantage of the night. Erie, however, responded in kind and rattled off 11 consecutive points of their own to slice the Herd lead to 17. The BayHawks pulled to within 14, but consecutive baskets by McCoy ended Erie’s comeback attempt. The Herd regained a 20-point lead and hit the 100-point plateau in the closing seconds of the third quarter. Both teams posted 30-point third quarter, but after outpacing the BayHawks by five, Wisconsin led 103-82 heading into the final 12 minutes.
The fourth quarter was status quo as the Herd maintained a 20-point lead throughout. Tucker led all Wisconsin players with nine points in the period, and Leon Gilmore tallied his first professional point with a free throw in a closing seconds of the game. The Herd led for the final 35 minutes of the game and won in convincing fashion, 133-115.
With the win, Wisconsin now has the longest winning streak in the G League and has a 1.5 game lead over the Maine Red Claws for the top spot in the Eastern Conference. Additionally, the Herd set a season-high with 133 points and are now 3-4 all-time against the BayHawks.