Express 48-39 (4-4)
Hurricanes 51-31 (4-4)
|Score (click for boxscore)||Game MVP||Hi Points||Hi Rebounds||Hi Assists|
|1. Express 104, Hurricanes 92||Alex English||35 Kevin McHale||12 Kevin McHale||9 Fat Lever|
|2. Hurricanes 115, Express 107||Kevin McHale||29 Kevin McHale||15 Jack Sikma||12 Allen Leavell|
|3. Hurricanes 131, Express 125||Kevin McHale||54 Kevin McHale||10 David Greenwood||10 Darnell Valentine|
|4. Hurricanes 132, Express 128||Kevin McHale||36 Kevin McHale||14 Rodney McCray||11 Allen Leavell|
|5. Hurricanes 115, Express 104||John Williams||28 Kevin McHale||13 John Williams||7 Leavell/Lever/Valentine|
Game 1 – Milwaukee Arena was rocking for Game 1 as Mount Dora hosts the Rocky Mountain Express. The Express took control early leading after the 1st quarter, 27 to 26 and really never looked back extending their lead to 9 after the 3rd quarter and cruising to a 104 to 92 point win. Express were lead by Alex English with 26 and the Hurricanes Kevin McHale led all scorers with 35. Express outshoot the Hurricanes 48.2% to 38.4% on the road to take Game 1 of the series.
Game 2 – Mount Dora needing a win at home took control of the game early and never looked back winning 115 to 107 over the Rocky Mountain Express in Game 2 of the Eastern Semi-finals. Kevin McHale was named MVP with 29 points and 10 rebounds. Fat Lever led the Express with 21 points. Game 3 moves to Denver.
Game 3 – After the Rocky Mountain Express earned a split in the first two games at Mount Dora, the Hurricanes wanted to reclaim home court advantage. They came out with the intention of feeding it down low to Kevin McHale and daring the Express bigs to stop him. Well, in the first period, they couldn’t. Herman Munster was up to the challenge, scoring 19 first period points, half of his team’s production. Detlef Schrempf and Fat Lever each tallied 7 and the home team found themselves down only 3 at the first intermission. Darrell Griffith, who sat out the first two meetings due to a nagging injury, topped the ‘Canes in the 2nd with 7. Alex English, the NBA’s leading scorer in the decade of the 80’s, countered with 10, but MDH increased their lead by two, making the scoreboard read 63-58 at halftime. The 3rd frame almost duplicated period one with McHale scoring 18 this time and the Schrempf/Lever combo again getting 7 apiece. After 36 minutes, the game was 97-88 in favor of the visitors. Rocky Mountain wasn’t rolling over and giving up. They went on a 19-12 run early in the period, cutting the deficit to 4 at 111-107. The pendulum swung to Mt. Dora for a 7-2 run, making it 120-111. The next 90 seconds was all Express and they cut the lead to 122-119. Another swing to the guests and they were up 128-121. Joe Barry Carroll got in the paint for a hoop with 9.5 seconds that made it 129-125. Jeff Malone ended the scoring with a pair from the charity stripe and the Mt. Dora Hurricanes won it 131-125. McHale earned game MVP honors with 54 points, going 21-33 from the floor and 13-16 from the line. John Williams added 21 points off the bench. English led RME with 30, with Carroll finishing with 21. Game four’s question is what will Rocky Mountain do to stop McHale.
Game 4 – Kevin McHale continued his mastery of the Express’ interior defense, scoring 10 first period points. Mount Dora only mustered a 2-point advantage though after the first 12 minutes at 35-33. The big guy added 8 more in the 2nd and the Hurricanes were up 62-53 heading into the locker rooms. Alex English and Fat Lever each tallied 9 in the third period, but Jack Sikma and McHale had 10 apiece as Rocky Mountain found themselves on the short end of a 107-85 score heading into the 4th. The visitors kept their lead to about 20 points thru the first half of the final frame and started pulling their starters with 7 minutes to go. The Express took full advantage, scoring 12 unanswered points to make it a 7-point game. MDH was forced to put their starters back in for the last minute or so to ensure the win and took a 3-1 series lead with the 132-128 victory. McHale was once again game MVP with a game-high 36 points to go with 11 boards and 2 blocks. Sikma added 20 points and Rodney McCray came off the bench to score 18 and pull down a game-high 14 rebounds. Lever topped RME with 25, English had 23 and Mark Price 20. The ‘Canes are excited to head home one game away from the Eastern Conference Finals.
Game 5 – Mount Dora dominates the Express inside outscoring them 70 to 40 in the paint, shooting 52.1% from the field compared to a woeful 39% for Rocky Mountain. The Hurricanes take Game 5, 115 to 104. John Williams was named MVP of Game 5 scoring 24 and pulling down 13 big rebounds. Mark Price led the Express with 21 points. Kevin McHale was named Eastern Semi-Finals MVP as Mount Dora advances to face the Fresno Stars in the Eastern Finals.