After two tough losses in the last week in which the Utah Flash couldn't close out their opponents, they blew a big fourth-quarter lead before hanging on to beat the Idaho Stampede 99-92.
Utah improved to 16-16 on the year as they defeated Idaho (23-7), which has the best record in the NBA Development League.
"It's a terrific win for our guys to beat, not just the No. 1 team in our division, but in the whole D-League," Flash coach Brad Jones said.
After five turnovers in the first five minutes of the game, Jones took a timeout, and the Flash shook off their slow start.
They closed the quarter on a 22-4 run, as newly acquired guard Curtis Stinson hit a floater to give the Flash a 28-15 lead at the end of the period.
Idaho guard Mickael Gelabale almost single-handedly kept the Stampede in the game, as he went 5-6 to score two-thirds of their points.
In the second quarter, Utah forward Brian Jackson helped maintain the lead by scoring eight points in the period as Idaho trimmed the score to 50-41 at halftime.
The Flash threatened to blow the game open in the third quarter. A pair of thunderous dunks by centers Kyrylo Fesenko and James Lang punctuated a 26-12 run after halftime as Utah took a 76-53 lead.
Idaho responded to rip off nine straight points in the final two minutes to cut the lead to 14 points, but the Flash ended the quarter on a high note. Guard Brian Hamilton hit a runner in the lane to beat the buzzer and give Utah a 78-62 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
After the Flash took an 18-point lead with 10:29 to go, Idaho went on a 23-8 run to cut the score to 91-88 with 3:16 left in the game.
Stinson stopped the run by dribbling around the perimeter and pulling up to hit a jumper near the top of the key.
When the Stampede once again cut the lead down to three points with 42 seconds to go, Stinson stepped up again, catching the ball at the right wing and scoring a driving layup with 19 seconds left to preserve the victory.
"Part of the reason we took Curtis in the expansion draft was because we knew he was a veteran guard," Jones said. "He knew what to do. He didn't settle. He made something happen on both of those plays when the game was on the line."
Almond led Utah with 21 points, while the Flash got a combined 30 points and 19 rebounds on 13-24 shooting from Fesenko and Lang.
Gelabale and guard Mike Taylor each had 24 points for Idaho.