LaMelo, LiAngelo Ball Combine for 101 Points, 31 Rebounds in JBA Win vs. ChicagoJuly 22, 2018
The Los Angeles Ballers took the court against the Chicago Ballers in Chicago on Saturday night, giving LaMelo and LiAngelo Ball an opportunity to continue to add to their respective Junior Basketball Association highlight reels. Los Angeles improved to 5-2 in the JBA's inaugural season with a 130-122 victory, and per usual, the Ball bros filled up the stat sheet.
There was plenty to watch in the fourth quarter, as the Ball bros put the team on their back. LiAngelo (54 points, 16 rebounds, five assists and three steals) and LaMelo (47 points, 15 rebounds and seven assists) combined for 78 percent of L.A.'s points. LiAngelo (21-of-39) was more efficient than LaMelo (11-of-25), but the two of them combined for a memorable performance by surpassing the century mark by themselves.
In the opening minutes of the fourth, LaMelo got tangled up with Chicago's Travis Ingram while chasing the ball in hopes of a transition basket. Ingram took exception to Ball's hand coming in contact with his face and let him know. Emotions would again run high in the closing minutes, but neither situation escalated.
The L.A. squad came into the matchup averaging 140.5 points per game and had reached 170 in each of the past two contests. On this night, though, points were not so easy to come by out of the gate. L.A. was held to the low 20s in the opening period and managed just 51 points before halftime.
While his team had a tough time getting buckets early on, LiAngelo was a force. He put up 26 points and 10 rebounds in the first half, although he also had five turnovers.
As for LaMelo, the 16-year-old had a tough time finding his shot from deep. Even though he found other ways to score, he hoisted up numerous air balls from distance and shot just 2-of-13 from beyond the arc. In a game where neither team could create separation, those poor looks did not help the cause.
One of his top highlights of the night came on a tough shot in the paint, via SB Nation's Ricky O'Donnell:
L.A. has been involved in its fair share of blowouts, but this was a tight game throughout. The two squads were tied at 92 apiece heading into the final period, so it was a battle to see who would prevail—and it certainly created tension.
Los Angeles will be back in action on Thursday against Houston at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.