Austin, TX February 2-
The Austin Toros fell to the Reno Bighorns Tuesday night 109-97 in the first professional basketball game at the Cedar Park Center. Malik Hairston led all with 29 points, but it was not enough to continue the Toros win streak, which ended at six.
The Reno Bighorns jumped ahead of the Toros early on, leading the first 11 minutes of the game, until Hairston made two shots from beyond the arc in the final minute of the quarter. The Toros ended the quarter on a 6-0 run.
Hairston was able to put the Toros up 25-24 at the start of the second quarter, but the lead didn’t last long. Reno went on a 16-2 run that spanned half of the quarter, and put the Bighorns ahead 40-27. Both teams traded baskets the rest of the quarter, with the Bighorns having the advantage at half 55-42. Desmon Farmer led all at the half with 14.
Both teams came out in full force in the third quarter, trading basket for basket, until Alonzo Gee’s layup with four minutes left in the quarter. That sparked a 15-5 run to bring the Toros within one point after 3 quarters, 74-73. Hairston shot 6-of-9 in the quarter, and led the Toros with 12 points.
Early in the 4th quarter, the Toros grabbed the lead again. But it wouldn’t last long. Reno’s Chris Davis was able to start another Bighorns run with a layup. The Toros battled throughout the quarter to hang with the Bighorns, but were unable to overcome the deficit. Bighorns Head Coach Jay Humphries used Dwayne Jones’ foul trouble to his advantage by repeatedly forcing his players to drive the lane throughout the quarter.
Hairston led the Toros with 28 points and six rebounds. Four other Toros scored in double figures: Gee (18), Curtis Jerrells (16) Eddie Basden (14) and Jones (13). Jones led all with 19 boards, and notched his 21st double-double of the season.
Rod Benson led the Bighorns with 26 points and 14 rebounds. Mo Charlo also had a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds.
Both teams will face off tomorrow night at the Cedar Park Center to wrap up the Cedar Park Showdown. For tickets please visit ticketmaster.com or the Cedar Park Box Office