Stampede loses, out of playoff contention
Boise, Idaho, March 29, 2014 - The Idaho Stampede were defeated by the Reno Bighorns 98-79 Saturday night at CenturyLink Arena. The loss eliminates the Stampede from the playoff race while Reno secures a spot in the 2013-14 NBA Development League Playoffs.
In a must-win game for Idaho, top prospect Kevin Murphy received two consecutive technical fouls with 10:37 remaining in the first quarter and was ejected from the game. Stampede coach Mike Peck was forced to look to the bench for help on a night were CJ Leslie, Vander Blue and Dallas Lauderdale were already unavailable due to injury.
Reno trailed 25-22 after the first quarter as both teams shot poorly from the field. Bighorns guard KC Rivers scored 11 points in the second quarter to help his team gain a 50-45 advantage at the half. Derrick Caracter and Scott Machado each scored 11 points in the first half to lead the Stampede.
The Bighorns took over in the third quarter, holding Idaho to just 33 percent shooting and outscoring them 26-15 in the quarter. Reno continued their steady play in the fourth period to close out the game and Idaho's season.
Idaho had five players score in double-figures, led by Derrick Caracter's 18 points and 12 rebounds off the bench. The team shot just 1-18 from beyond the arc and just 32 percent overall. Scott Machado pitched in with 11 points and nine assists.
KC Rivers led all scorers with 22 points off the bench. Willie Reed posted 19 points and 10 rebounds on assignment from the Sacramento Kings. Sundiata Gaines nearly recorded a triple-double with 12 points, 10 rebounds and 8 assists.
With three games remaining, Reno (27-20) will look to pass Santa Cruz in the playoff standings. Their next game is in Los Angeles on March 31. The Stampede (23-24) will wrap up the season with three road games, beginning with the Iowa Energy on April 2.