66ers Fly in Playoffs With 111-101 Win Over Skyforce

FALLS, S.D., April 11, 2010 – Three Oklahoma City Thunder assignees combined for 61 points, 17 rebounds and nine assists, as the Tulsa 66ers defeated the Sioux Falls Skyforce 111-101 in the third and deciding game of the first round to advance to the semi-finals of the 2010 Development League Playoffs to face the Iowa Energy. Kyle Weaver finished with a team-high 27 points, eight rebounds and seven assists, while Mustafa Shakur added 23 points and five boards, and Byron Mullens contributed 11 points and seven rebounds.

66ers Head Coach Nate Tibbetts missed the first nine minutes of the game, after going to the hospital and receiving an IV for flu symptoms. He returned to the arena in the midst of a first quarter that was a back-and-forth affair, with eight lead changes and three ties. Weaver scored 15 points in the period, as Tulsa shot 10-for-24 from the field and battled back from five-points down with a 13-5 run to finish the quarter a head 29-26. Kirk Penney scored seven first quarter points, as the Skyforce shot 8-of-18. Both teams made all nine free throw attempts in the period.

The 66ers continued their run in the second quarter, starting the period on a 19-2 run, as the Skyforce missed their first 13 attempts from the field and moved ahead 48-28 with 4:56 left in the first half after a Shakur three-pointer. A three-pointer by Sioux Falls’ Mike Nelson cut the lead to 11 at 51-40 with 2:08 remaining, but the 66ers bounced back with a 7-0 run before going into halftime with a 58-43 edge.

Penney scored 11 points in the third quarter, as the Skyforce shot 11-for-22 and outscored the 66ers 27-23 in the period. But the 66ers maintained and took an 81-70 lead into the final quarter, after Shakur scored seven points in the and the team shot 8-for-15 from the field.

Shakur led the 66ers with nine fourth quarter points, including a three-pointer with 4:15 left in the contest that put Tulsa ahead 102-85 and a breakaway dunk to seal the game with less than a minute to go. The 66ers shot 8-of-15 from the field and 12-of-17 from the free throw line in the quarter. The Skyforce shot 10-for-23 from the field and 10-of-11 from the charity stripe, as Penney connected on 13 points in the period.

Led by the Thunder trio of Weaver, Shakur and Mullens, the 66ers finished with five players in double-figures scoring. Larry Owens had 21 points and five rebounds, while Latavious Williams came off the bench for a double-double of 13 points and 10 rebounds.

The Skyforce were led by Penney with a game-high 36 points, while Chris McCray added 22 points and seven assists, including going 11-for-11 from the free throw line. Joe Krabbenhoft had 11 points, while Greg Stiemsma added a double-double of 10 points and 15 boards.

The Semi-Finals match up with the Energy will begin with Game 1 in downtown Tulsa at the Tulsa Convention Center on Friday, April 16 at 7 p.m. The series will shift to Des Moines for Game 2 on Sunday, April 18 at 4 p.m. and the Energy will host Game 3, if necessary, on Tuesday, April 20 at 7 p.m.

Updated 04-12-2010

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