Arsenal 120, Vipers 116 OT
ANAHEIM, California -- Despite a 43-point debut for new forward Jawad Williams the Rio Grande Valley Vipers lost their fourth consecutive game with a 120-116 overtime loss to the Anaheim Arsenal Wednesday night in at The Arena at the Anaheim Convention Center. The Vipers two-game road losing streak came to an end while the Aresnal have won three of their last four contests.
The Vipers trailed by as many as nine points in the second half but the Vipers fought back to take a 101-99 lead with 5:29 remaining in regulation on Ernest Scott’s three-pointer. Anaheim regained the lead and led 109-107 with 5.9 seconds remaining. Williams scored a 10-foot jump hook to tie the game at 109 to force overtime.
In the overtime period Scott was fouled at three-point line with 20-seconds remaining with the Vipers down four. Scott drained all three foul shots to cut the Viper deficit to 117-116. Cedric Bozeman was fouled with 10 seconds remaining. After converting the first, Bozeman missed the second giving the Vipers a chance to tie or win the game on the ensuing possession. Trent Strickland missed short on a left wing three pointer that would have won the game. Anaheim converted two free throws after the miss to seal the win.
Williams’ 43 point effort is a new season high for a Viper player this season, shattering the previous high of 30 accomplished by Both Alpha Bangura and Smush Parker Despite being in foul trouble for a good portion of the game, Trent Strickland scored 23 points while hauling in eight rebounds in the Viper loss. Jared Jordan scored only five points, but tied the franchise record for assists in a game with 15 in his return. Kurt Looby tallied his second career double-double with 10 points and 14 rebounds in the loss.
James White, who scored a D-League season high 47-points in his previous meeting with RGV, scored 35 in Wednesday’s game. Bozeman chipped in with 27 points and 11 rebounds in the Anaheim victory.
The Vipers will continue their West Coast road trip on Friday in Los Angeles when they face the L.A. D-Fenders at Staples Center for a 3:30 pm PT tip-off.