Wednesday, 03 March 2021 16:16

Marauders season ends with a whimper

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Marauders fans will forever wonder what might have been. The best record in the league and the OBWL MVP had Minnesota dreaming of a title, but it wasn’t in the cards. 

Late in the regular season, MVP Andrew Evans went on the IR with a heel injury, but the team still had the ammunition to cruise through round one against the Manhattan Swing 4-1 and fend off the London Knights 4-2 in round two. Their road came to an end in the conference finals against the Boston Buzzards, 4-1. 

Minnesota started the series strong, winning game one 112-100, but the Buzzards soon exposed the cracks in the Marauders’ armor. The patchwork offense came tumbling down when Evans’ backup Jame Trotman went down with his own season-ending injury late in game three. The offense scuffled badly down the stretch, ending the series with a whimper, scoring just 76 points in a game five rout. 

“I hate that we weren’t able to play Boston with our full compliment of talent. With a squad like that you need all the ammunition you can get, but you have to play the hand you’re dealt,” said Minnesota coach Byron Davis. “We’re going to take a little time to lick our wounds, and then we’ll turn our focus forward. Let’s get these guys healthy and get ready to push for the big trophy next season.”

The season ended in disappointment, but there is much reason for optimism in 2029-30 if Evans returns to form. HIs league-high 31.4 points per game paced the league’s best offense, and, at age 23, there is still room for improvement. 

The core of the team returns, including Tony Pence, who showed he is still the heart of the team, posting 17.9 points, 7 rebounds, and 7 assists nightly. Andrew Lawler showed he is one of the league’s best pure shooters, averaging 18.1 points a night keyed by 47% on 3-pointers. 

Veteran centers Ervin Holmes and Curtis Lamb proved to be a solid combo in the post, with Holmes pulling down 8.3 rebounds and notching 4.4 blocks and Lamb averaging 14.8 points off the bench. 

Late in the season they saw promise from young Raphael Stokes, who was activated when Evans went down and responded by scoring 9.6 points a game in the playoffs. 

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