The Texas Legends (24-18) won a hard-fought battle over the Agua Caliente Clippers (20-22) 100-97 Friday night on the West coast.
James Palmer opened the game with a long ball for the Clippers to give them the lead they would hold through the quarter. Texas faced a one-point deficit heading into the second and erased it within seconds with an outside shot from Josh Reaves. After exchanging leads twice and tying it up twice, the Clippers regained control streaking through eight unanswered points. Texas responded with a 19-2 run to take the game’s first double-digit lead and used the large gap to fend off the home team 54-48 at halftime.
Agua Caliente opened the second half with back-to-back baskets to come within two, but Texas found an answer again, streaking through eight straight. The Legends were up 13 with just under five minutes left in the third but Terance Mann led the Clippers to a 13-0 finish to tie it up 71-all at the buzzer. The two teams exchanged baskets early in the fourth with Agua Caliente landing on top. Texas faced a seven-point deficit with just under three minutes to play and erased it in less than 90 seconds with three straight baskets (8 points) from Dakota Mathias. Cameron Payne sealed the deal with a floater that gave Texas the go-ahead.
Mathias led the Legends with 22 points and a game-high 14 rebounds. Payne added a team-high 23 points with 4 rebounds and 7 assists, and Jaylen Hoard came off the bench for another double-double for Texas with 11 points and 11 rebounds. Josh Reaves tagged on 12 points, 4 rebounds and Antonius Cleveland grabbed 10 points, 2 blocks to round out the double-digit scoring.
Amir Coffey came off the bench for 26 points, 3 steals for the Clippers while Johnathan Motley (16 points, 13 rebounds) and Mann (17 points, 10 rebounds) each added double-doubles. Mfiondu Kabengele posted 17 points, 7 rebounds, and a game-high 5 blocks.
The two teams will rematch Sunday at 5pm CT. Fans can catch all the action live on www.TexLegends.com.