HIDALGO – As the Austin Spurs took the court for their first road game of the season, a slow start was to be expected.
Facing an early 10-4 deficit, head coach Blake Ahearn went for a faster, smaller lineup in hopes of providing a spark before the game got out of hand.
Despite only scoring 111 points on the night, Ahearn found much more than the spark he sought early on as the Spurs pulled out a seven point victory over the Vipers.
Olivier Hanlan led all scores with 27 points to go along with four rebounds and five assists. Jeff Ledbetter lived up to his ‘sniper’ nickname with 26 points on 8-for-9 shooting from beyond the arc. Meanwhile, Darrun Hilliard struggled with his shot and ball security, but still managed to finish with 19 points.
Six players scored in double figures for Rio Grande Valley led by 20 points from Troy Williams. Briante Weber finished with 19 points and eight assists for the Vipers, but also committed six turnovers. Lastly, Monte Morris had 13 points, four rebounds, two assists and two steals.
Austin’s early miscues were quickly rectified by some hot shooting as the Spurs used a 21-5 run in the first quarter to take a commanding 33-20 lead.
Ledbetter’s strong performance sparked Hanlan’s 7-point second quarter as the Spurs held off a late rally by the Vipers to maintain a double digit halftime lead.
The Vipers would get to within two points in the third quarter and one point in the fourth, but the trio of Hanlan, Hilliard and Nick Johnson shut the door on an RGV rally as the Spurs won 111-104.
Austin Spurs (2-1) at Reno BigHorns (1-0)
Reno Events Center – Reno, NV
9:00 p.m. CST – NBA G League Facebook Live