Give and Go
By Erie Times-News Sports Erie Times-New staff bloggers
The Erie Times-News sports staff delivers in-depth coverage of the Erie BayHawks and pro and college basketball   Read more about this blog.
 Phone: 814-870-1700
Posted: April 8th, 2009
‘Birds still flying around the playoff radar….
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All-D-League first-team pick, guard Will Conroy, tied a D-League single-game scoring record Wednesday night by scoring 53 points, but Albuquerque were trounced by 28 points at Colorado, 155-127.

Albuquerque hasn’t completely faded away, but the Thunderbirds are becoming less and less of a threat to the Erie BayHawks’ playoff hopes.

After the Colorado 14ers pounded by them by 28 points Wednesday night, the Thunderbirds now need to win their final two games and have Erie lose its final two games in order to catch the BayHawks for that eighth and final playoff spot.

Albuquerque owns the tiebreaker against Erie.

The Thunderbirds (23-25) will likely hold up to their end of theĀ  bargain because their last two games are at home Friday and Saturday against Tulsa, which has the D-League’s worst record at 14-34. Albuquerque is 4-1 against Tulsa.

Erie (25-23) may even find a way to lose its last two games against Fort Wayne (19-29). The BayHawks, who are 3-2 against the Mad Ants, play at Fort Wayne on Friday and at face their Central Division rivals at home on Saturday.

However, the Thunderbirds also need Reno (24-24) and Sioux Falls (24-24) to lose their last two games so they can move ahead of them.

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Frank Williams and the Sioux Falls Skyforce are just a game behind Erie for the eighth and final playoff.

Then again, if Erie, Sioux Falls, Albuquerque and Reno all end the year at 25-25, the Thunderbirds would win the tiebreaker.

It’s based on better winning percentage among all head-to-head games.

1. Albuquerque: 4-2 (.666 winning percentage)
(1-1 vs. Reno, 1-1 vs. Sioux Falls, 2-0 vs. Erie)
2. Erie: 6-5 (.545)
(1-1 vs. Reno, 1-1 vs. Albuquerque, 4-3 vs. Sioux Falls)
3. Reno 3-3 (.500)
(1-1 vs. Albuquerque, 1-1 vs. Reno, 1-1 vs. Sioux Falls)
4. Sioux Falls 5-6 (.454)
(1-1 vs. Albuquerque, 1-1 vs. Reno, 3-4 vs. Erie)

Reno closes out the season Thursday at Los Angeles (18-31) and Saturday at home against Colorado. Sioux Falls’ final two games are at Iowa (26-22) on Friday and Saturday at home against Anaheim (15-33).

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Richie Frahm has been instrumental in the Reno Bighorns turning their season around. Since he joined the team on Feb. 18, Reno has won 13 of it last 19 games. Before he arrived, Reno only had 11 wins. The former Gonzaga standout is averaging 18.9 points and shooting 48.4 percent from 3-point range.

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