The Reno Bighorns (2-6) fell to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers (6-2) 103-83 Thursday night at the Reno Events Center.
Sacramento Kings Assignment Player Skal Labissiere led the Bighorns with 20 points and six rebounds while Kings Affiliate Player Lamar Patterson added 18 points, two rebounds and two assists. Chane Behanan notched nine points and seven rebounds in the Thursday night contest.
Darius Morris paces the Vipers with 21 points, six rebounds and six assists as Jarvis Threatt tallied 17 points and five rebounds.
The opening minutes of the first frame was a tight battle that saw three lead changes in three minutes as the Bighorns held the edge over the Vipers until Le’Bryan Nash sunk two free throws after being fouled by Patterson. The Vipers would jump out to a 16-point lead heading into the second quarter.
The two teams remained scoreless the first two minutes of play in the second quarter before Nash scored a free throw. The Bighorns responded with a floating jumper by Patterson and a layup from Labissiere to close the deficit to 15. The Vipers would maintain their double digit lead over the Bighorns before the Bighorns responded with a late 5-0 run to end the first half trailing the Vipers 54-32.
Labissiere ended the first half behind a 4-4 shooting effort, totaling 16 points.
The Bighorns outscored the Vipers 29-23 in the third quarter behind two triples from Patterson and a 2-3 shooting effort from Labissiere. The Bighorns chipped away at the Vipers lead cutting the deficit to 15 after a triple from Patterson with 4:15 remaining to play in third. Kings Assignment Player Geogios Papagiannis added the final points for the Bighorns in the third after a layup with 30 second in play. The Vipers led the Bighorns 77-61 entering the final quarter.
Patterson opened the fourth quarter with a three cutting the deficit to 79-66 with just under 10:00 remaining in play. The Bighorns were able to come within 13 points during the final frame, but were unable to overcome the Vipers lead, ultimately dropping 103-83 to the Vipers.
The Bighorns will travel to Arizona to take on the Northern Arizona Suns on Saturday, Dec. 3 at 6 p.m. PST.