OKLAHOMA CITY – With seven minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, the Austin Spurs were struggling to maintain one point lead.
Turnovers and poor offensive execution would plague the Spurs over the next three minutes, allowing the Oklahoma City Blue to secure the lead, and eventually the win, 104-97.
Cory Jefferson had a game-high 26 points for the Austin Spurs, in addition to eight rebounds. Daniel Nwaelele got the start on Saturday to finish with 17 points and eight rebounds. Patricio Garino had 13 points in 26 minutes, with Livio Jean-Charles chipping in 12 points and four rebounds off the bench.
Guard Semaj Christon put up 24 points, five rebounds and five assists for the Blue. Josh Huestis finished with 18 points and four rebounds in 30 minutes, while Daniel Hamilton double-doubled with 17 points and 10 rebounds.
Hamilton started the game on fire, scoring 11 of his 17 points in the first quarter to give the Blue an early 32-30 advantage.
Both teams put up nearly identical stats in the second quarter, as Oklahoma City maintained their two point lead heading into the locker room.
Austin’s halftime adjustments allowed the Spurs to put the clamps on the Blue, holding them to just 19 points in the third quarter. But the Spurs offense slowly stalled out, preserving just a two point lead heading into the final frame.
During Austin’s scoreless drought, the Blue used an 8-0 run to regain a lead, before Cory Jefferson put on his cape to save the Spurs once again. Unfortunately, Austin missed practically everything they threw at the basket over the final two minutes of the fourth, falling to the Blue by seven points.
Up next for the struggling Austin Spurs (9-15) is the 2017 D-League Showcase. They’ll take on the Rio Grande Valley Vipers (16-10) from the Hershey Centre in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada on Wednesday, Jan. 18th. Tipoff for that game is at 7:30 p.m. CST.