The City Reapers held on late against the YNG Dreamerz for an 81-77 victory to take game one in the best-of-five series.
With 16 seconds left trailing by two, the Dreamerz had a chance to tie or take the lead, and Jazian Gortman attempted a step back three that was off the mark. The Reapers came up empty at the free-throw line on the next possession, but they forced a turnover to get the ball back. Eli Ellis cooly sank two free throws to ice the game and give the Reapers the win.
Ausar Thompson led the Reapers in points with 18. Bryson Tiller and Eli Ellis both added 17 points. Amen Thompson had 15 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds.
The game was tied at 58 going into the fourth quarter, but the Reapers got some separation early in the final frame going up six. The Dreamerz always responded to hang around to have a chance at the win in the end.
There were 15 lead changes in the game with the Reapers biggest lead only being eight points.
TJ Clark led the Dreamerz with 18 points going 5-6 from three. Kanaan Carlyle had 16 and Jazian Gortman had 15 points.
The Reapers had 20 assists to only 10 turnovers. The Dreamerz had 14 assists to 12 turnovers.
Game two is Saturday night at 7 p.m. and will be broadcast on Amazon Prime.