Late game struggles hurt Spurs, fall to Bighorns in overtime


RENO – Six players scored in double figures for the Austin Spurs, but a fourth quarter collapse by the silver and black led to a Reno Bighorns win in overtime, 97-91.

Bryn Forbes shot an abysmal 3-for-15 from the field on Wednesday night, but was a perfect 8-for-8 from the free throw line to finish with 15 points. Charles Garcia had 14 points and six rebounds off the bench. Cory Jefferson picked up another double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds in 33 minutes, while Patricio Garino also finished with 11 points.

Guard Isaiah Cousins led Reno with 19 points, while Pe’Shon Howard chipped in 18 points off the bench. Lamar Patterson was solid again with 16 points, nine rebounds and four assists. Sacramento Kings rookie Skal Labissiere, on assignment in Reno, added a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds.

The Bighorns shot poorly to start the game, but offensive struggles afflicted both teams, as Austin led 24-20 to end the first quarter.

Finding ways to put the ball through the basket continued to plague each squad heading into halftime, as both teams shot under 40 percent in the first half to end the second quarter tied at 42.

In the third, the Spurs managed to put the clamps on defensively, forcing seven Reno turnovers and allowing just 16 points in the period. After building a nine point lead, the Spurs went into the final 12 minutes up 65-58.

As it’s been all year, Austin failed at closing out the game strong. The Spurs shot a horrific 29 percent from the field in the fourth and also allowed 29 fourth quarter points on the defensive end. Forbes tied the game at the free throw line for Austin with six seconds remaining to force overtime, but Reno pulled away early in the extra period en route to victory.

With one more game left on their mini road trip, the Austin Spurs (9-14) will face the Oklahoma City Blue (15-8) on Saturday night. Tipoff is at 7 p.m. CST from the Cox Convention Center.


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