January 24, 2016
BLOOMINGTON, Illinois – The Lima Express used a monster game from James Helton to push their record over the .500 mark for the first time on the 2016 Midwest Professional Basketball Season, with a 138-118 win over the Gateway Steam Sunday.
The two teams exchanged the lead several times in the first quarter before Lima used a burst to take a 21-11 lead with 3:27 left in the period. A Gateway run narrowed the gap to 23-21 at the end of the first frame.
Lima hung onto the lead until the 6:25 mark, when back-to-back buckets by Phil Stewart gave the Steam the lead at 33-32. The Express regained the lead one possession later, and it would be a lead they would not relinquish for the rest of the game. The half ended with Lima up 55-51.
Led by Helton and Cordaryl Ballard, Lima ballooned the lead to 17 points in the third, which ended with the Express up 92-81. Gateway would get to within ten at 101-91 midway through the fourth, but from there, the Express pulled away.
Helton finished with 36 points on 16-of-20 shooting. Ballard had 21 points and eleven rebounds. Johnny Elliott, Kyle Meyer, David Atkinson, Ed Jenkins and Devaughn Taylor-Buntyn all scored in double figures for Lima (3-2).
Lonnel Johnson led Gateway (0-2) with 35 points on 13-of-17 shooting. Nicholas Reed, Anthony Goode and Brandon Goss all scored in double figures for the Steam.