SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — The Springfield Armor lost 112-97 to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers on Monday night at the MassMutual Center.
The Armor (9-19) got off to a strong start on their home court. Springfield trailed for just 12 seconds in the first and led by as many as eight points (23-15).
The Vipers (17-9) chipped away with an 8-2 run to close the first quarter, but the Armor still held a 25-23 advantage. Carleton Scott had the hot hand early, knocking down a trio of 3-pointers for nine first-quarter points.
The Armor, led by Ramone Moore, continued to dictate the pace during the second quarter. Moore came off the bench to sink back-to-back 3-pointers during a span of 32 seconds early in the period, and his turnaround jumper with 4:16 to go in the half gave the Armor a 47-40 cushion.
The Vipers scored six of their next seven points to cut the lead to two, but another Scott 3-pointer and a Ben Uzoh runner bumped the advantage back up to 55-48 with 1:08 to go in the first half. After a Glen Rice Jr. free throw and a Vernon Macklin dunk brought Rio Grande Valley to within four, James Mays’ layup with 24 seconds to go gave the Armor a 57-51 lead at intermission. Scott scored 16 of his team-high 23 points during the first half on 5 of 9 shooting, including 4 of 6 from behind the arc.
During the third quarter, Scott continued his stellar shooting night with two more 3-pointers to give Springfield a 63-55 cushion at the 10:41 mark. After a Rice layup and a Terrence Jones dunk, Mays sank a jump shot to push the lead to 65-59. From there, the Vipers responded with a 12-1 run to pull ahead 71-66 with 5:27 to go in the third. The Armor evened the score at 71 at the 2:46 mark, but Macklin closed the quarter with six straight points to give Rio Grande Valley a 77-73 lead through three.
The Armor hung around during the fourth quarter and trailed by five points (92-87) with 6:08 to go before the Vipers seized command for good. Rio Grande Valley put the game away with a 19-6 run to take a game-high 18-point lead (111-93) with 1:24 remaining, and it held on for a 112-97 victory.
Scott scored a team-high and season-tying 23 points on 7 of 11 shooting, including the Armor’s season-high 6 of 9 from behind the arc, in 34 minutes. Moore tallied 17 points off the bench on 6 of 9 shooting (3 of 4 from downtown) in 22 minutes, Dennis Horner scored 15 points and dished out a career-high six assists in 42 minutes, and Willie Reed chipped in 10 points. Mays, who was named a 2013 NBA D-League All-Star earlier Monday, posted 14 points and eight rebounds in 32 minutes.
For the Vipers, Rice led all scorers with a season-high 35 points on 12 of 20 shooting, including 6 of 10 from behind the arc, with 15 rebounds in 40 minutes. The double-double was the first of the season for Rice, and the 35 points easily eclipsed his previous season-high of 14. Macklin contributed a season-high 26 points in 29 minutes off the bench, Terrence Jones tallied a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds in 39 minutes, and Scott Machado registered 14 points and seven assists in 35 minutes.
Three Vipers to participate in NBADL all-star game
McALLEN — The Rio Grande Valley Vipers’ Andrew Goudelock, Tim Ohlbrecht and Houston Rockets assignment Terrence Jones have been selected to play in the 7th annual NBA Development League All-Star Game.
Arinze Onuaku of the Canton Charge; Ron Howard of the Fort Wayne Mad Ants; Courtney Fortson of the Los Angeles D-Fenders; Micah Downs, Shelvin Mack (currently with the Philadelphia 76ers), DaJuan Summers and Chris Wright of the Maine Red Claws; Jerome Jordan and Marcus Landry of the Reno Bighorns; and the Tulsa 66ers’ Jeremy Lamb, on assignment from the Oklahoma City Thunder, were chosen to the futures team.
The team will be led by Red Claws coach Mike Taylor and his staff, who earned the trip to Houston by virtue of a 17-10 record and then a head-to-head tiebreaker with Alex Jensen and the staff of the Charge, who had the same record through games of Jan. 27, for the NBADL’s second-best winning percentage
Cory Joseph, on assignment from the San Antonio Spurs to the Austin Toros; Damion James and Jerel McNeal of the Bakersfield Jam; D.J. Kennedy and Henry Sims of the Erie BayHawks; James Mays of the Springfield Armor; Demetris Nichols of the Sioux Falls Skyforce; and Andrew Goudelock, Terrence Jones, on assignment from the Houston Rockets, and Tim Ohlbrecht of the Rio Grande Valley Vipers were selected to the prospects team, which is playing host to the game.
Bakersfield coach Will Voigt and his staff will lead the team based on having had the highest winning percentage with a 17-8 record in games played through Jan. 27.
“It’s exciting to host 20 of the NBA’s top young prospects as NBA D-League all-stars in Houston,” NBADL president Dan Reed said. “The NBA D-League All-Star Game not only allows fans to watch future NBA players playing in a family friendly, fun atmosphere at NBA all-star jam session, but it is an opportunity for these talented players to showcase their skills on basketball’s biggest stage during NBA all-star festivities.”
The field of 20 players was selected by a vote of the NBADL’s 16 coaches and was broken into two teams by league officials. Players were eligible to be selected based on having played in half of their team’s games through Jan. 27. Each player must be on an active NBADL roster at the time of the game in order to compete.
Seven players with NBA experience are on the prospects’ roster, including Jones (Houston) and Joseph (San Antonio), who was a member of the 2012 NBADL champion Toros. They are joined on the prospects team by another former Texas Longhorns player, Damion James, who earned a callup from the Jam to the Brooklyn Nets in January. James’ Bakersfield teammate, McNeal, along with Kennedy, Goudelock, and Nichols round out the field of players with NBA experience playing for Voigt in Houston.
An additional seven players who have played in the NBA anchor the futures team, including Philadelphia 76ers player Mack and his Maine teammates, Summers and Wright. Jeremy Lamb, an Oklahoma City Thunder guard who has played on assignment in Tulsa, along with Los Angeles’ Fortson and Reno’s Jordan and Landry also come into the game with NBA experience.
Last season, six of the 20 NBADL all-stars who played in Orlando went on to earn callups to the NBA later in the year. During the game’s six-year history, 70 of the 120 players have had, or subsequently earned, NBA experience.
NBADL all-star action will tip off at 1:30 p.m. with the three-point contest. The slam dunk contest will take place during halftime of the all-star game.
— Vipers Services
UTPA men’s golf 11th after two rounds at Rice
HOUSTON — The University of Texas-Pan American Broncs men’s golf team is tied for 11th out of 14 teams after two rounds in their spring opener at the Rice Intercollegiate on Monday at Westwood Golf Club.
The Broncs started strong, shooting a 296 during the first round, tying them for the seventh. Mathew Charles was one stroke off the lead after shooting a 3-under 69, and McAllen native Ricky Solis was three strokes back with a 1-under 71.
During the second round, however, Charles and Solis each shot 79. Chris Felix and Walker Barrett shot 74 and a 76, improving on their first-round scores of 79 and 77, respectively, to keep the Broncs at 308 for a two-round 604, tied with Arkansas State.
The Broncs are one stroke back of 10th-place Louisiana-Monroe and five back of ninth-place McNeese State.
Charles is tied for 33rd out of 80 golfers with a score of 148. Solis is tied for 41st at 150, and Felix and Barrett are tied for 52nd at 153.
The third-round begins at 8 a.m. Tuesday.
— UTPA Services