HIDALGO, TEXAS – Playing the first nationally televised home game in Rio Grande Valley professional sports history, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers picked up their 22nd win of the season for the first time in franchise history with a 109-76 victory over the Reno Bighorns tonight at State Farm Arena in front of a sell-out crowd of 5,743.
The 33-point margin of victory is the largest ever by the Vipers, while the 76 points scored by the Bighorns is tied for the lowest points total ever by a Vipers’ opponent.
Up 59-40 after former-Viper Desmon Farmer made a free throw to complete a three-point play at the 9:29 mark of the third quarter, the Vipers (22-8) went on a 15-4 powered in part by six points by Julian Sensley as the Vipers built a 65-53 lead. DJ Strawberry broke the run 6:04 after it started with a three-pointer, which sparked an 8-1 run by the Bighorns (11-16) to get within 66-61 at the 2:02 mark. The Vipers scored the next seven points as they took a 73-63 lead at the end of the third quarter.
The Vipers scored the first 13 points of the fourth quarter over the first 3:06 to take an 87-63 lead. Dating back to the third quarter, it was a 20-2 run.
The Vipers outscored the Bighorns 30-8 in the fourth quarter to seal the win.
The Vipers were led by Craig Winder and adidas player of the game Sensley, who scored a season-high 22 points to go with Winder’s season-high 24. Mike Harris had 20 points while Garrett Temple had 16.
Will Blalock scored 17 points to lead the Bighorns, 10 of which came in the first quarter and Rod Benson added a double-double with 15 points, 12 rebounds and four steals.
The Vipers return to action on Tuesday at 6:00 p.m. when they travel to Fort Wayne to take on the Mad Ants.