Apparently the only thing that can stop the St. John’s Edge from winning at home is their schedule.
The Edge (7-2) registered their biggest offensive output in their young nine-game history Wednesday at Mile One Centre, where they downed the defending National Basketball League of Canada champion London Lightning for a second straight night, this time by a score of 136-117.
The expansion Edge have won all four of their games at home, but will have to work on maintaining their Mile One mojo for more than a month — they don’t have another game in St. John’s until Jan. 9.
That’s one of a number of schedule anomalies that resulted from the Edge’s late entrance into the league this summer, by which time most other teams had their schedules set. In fact, after St. John’s plays three road beginning with a contest next Wednesday in Kitchener, Ont., it won’t see any game action for more than three weeks. The Edge’s schedule resumes Jan. 9 at Mile One against the Windsor Express.
On Wednesday, Newfoundland guard Carl English did as he has done in the majority of the Edge’s games this fall by leading the team in scoring. But the story for St. John’s on this night went far beyond English’s 25 points.
The home side got contributions up and down the lineup, with no fewer than nine players reaching double figures in points, and it might have been more had not Jordan Jensen-Whyte been forced from the game with a first-half injury.
The Edge’s control of the contest was so thorough and the play of the bench so strong that English saw only two minutes of floor time in the fourth quarter.
Rashaun Broadus added 22 points for St. John’s, with Charles Hinkle, Alex Johnson, Grandy Glaze, Desmond Lee, Jarion Henry, Colton Ray and Rudolphe Joly part of a club whose members served up from 10 to 14 points each.
Henry finished with a double-double, grabbing a game-high 10 rebounds. Glaze chipped in with nine boards while English had a half dozen to go with five assists.
Reigning NBL Canada most valuable player Royce White made his return to the Lightning lineup and made his presence known with 34 points, eight rebounds and six assists — he had sat out Tuesday’s 126-123 loss serving a one-game league suspension.
Garrett Williamson added 27 points for London, but the visitors could not make up for their dismal three-point shooting (7-for-36) and the difference in bench production, which saw St. John’s reserves outscore their opponent’s 53-37.
The game, played before an announced crowd of 1,821,featured plenty of personal fouls — 60 in all, 33 by the Lightning — with White getting to the line 17 times.
Nevertheless, St. John’s again held an advantage in both quantity and success rate on trips to the charity stripe, going 35-for-46 as opposed to the Lightning, who were 22-for-34.