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Sioux Falls Skyforce Squash Iowa Energy to Close Home Schedule

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One night after being eliminated from playoff contention, the Sioux Falls Skyforce took out their frustration on the Iowa Energy 132-99 Tuesday night at the Sanford Pentagon.

It was the first time the Skyforce (28-20) had held their opponent under 100 points since Christmas Day. The Energy (11-37) have now lost nine straight games. Defensively Skyforce Head Coach Nevada Smith says the numbers back up the team’s effort.

“Holding them to 39 percent shooting and 99 points on 100 shots is pretty good. We were flying around a little bit. We were talking and active, getting in passing lanes. I thought we did a good job of making them take the shots we wanted them to take. The only thing we didn’t do a great job was on the offensive glass, but we were playing a little small tonight.”

Skyforce forward Henry Walker notes the team was more relaxed mentally without the pressure to win.

“Guys were just playing off instincts. That’s something coach was trying to get us to do from the get-go. Sometimes (during the season) we had it for stretches. Then we’d go for five minutes and lose it. (How we played tonight) it’s a great learning tool for the rookies.”

Walker’s 22 points, 12 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 blocks off the bench plus Denver Nuggets assignee Malik Beasley’s 22 points and 10 boards topped the Sioux Falls scoreboard. Keith Benson put up double-double number 31 on the season with 14 points and 11 rebounds.

Forward Jarell Martin who is on assignment from Memphis led the Energy with 19 points. Fellow big man Matt Costello got his double-double of 13 points and 11 rebounds and guard Wes Washpun scored 11 points with 10 assists.

The Skyforce will finish their season on the road with trips to Oklahoma City on Thursday and Austin on Saturday. Iowa will have two games at home to close their schedule against Erie Thursday and Rio Grande Valley on Saturday.

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