(LFPress.com) -- The London Lightning capped a remarkable debut season Sunday afternoon by winning the inaugural NBL of Canada title at the John Labatt Centre, beating the Halifax Rainmen 116-92 before 5,106 boisterous fans.
The win gave the Lightning a 3-2 win in the best-of-five series in which each team won its home games.
DeAnthony Bowden led the Lightning with 28 points, including four three-pointers, as London pulled away over the final quarter after entering it with a four-point lead. Gabe Freeman, the league's MVP, had 22 points, while Eddie Smith had 20, and Rodney Buford and Shamari Spears 18 apiece.
Chris Hagan led the Rainmen with 21.
Spears had 16 of his points in the first half as the Lightning took a 55-51 lead. The Lightning scored the game's first points, but the Rainmen led for the remainder of the first quarter, buoyed in large part by going 5-for-8 from beyond the three-point arc, and took a 26-23 lead after the opening 12 minutes.
But the Lightning, led by Spears, battled back to regain the lead midway through the second quarter and it changed hands numerous times over the final five minutes before Spears hit a fade-away jumper and a subsequent free throw with 37.7 seconds left for the final points of the half.
An hour before tipoff Sunday and Taylor Brown was pacing around the John Labatt Centre.
The general manager of the London Lightning was a bundle of nerves before the fifth and deciding game of the NBL of Canada final against the Halifax Rainmen.