EDINBURG, TX (7 January 2019) – The South Bay Lakers got off to a slow start and could not recover as they lost to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, 127-85 (box score), on Monday night. Scott Machado finished with 18 points for South Bay (10-14) and Joel Berry II added 17 points off the bench. Gary Payton II led the Vipers (14-9) with 17 points, 11 rebounds, six assists and six steals.
The Lakers fell behind early, trailing 30-9 after one, as they had their worst quarter of the season, shooting only 18.2 percent from the field. South Bay was outrebounded, 20-5, in the opening period. The Viper maintained their 21-point lead, as they went into the half with a 55-34 edge. Berry II found a rhythm with nine points in the first half, but Payton II finished the half with eight points, nine rebounds, three assists, two steals and a block for the Vipers.
South Bay cut the Vipers’ lead to 14 in the third behind a combined 17 points from Machado and Johnathan Williams, but the team couldn’t contain their opponent down the stretch as Rio Grande Valley went into the final period with a 91-62 lead. The Vipers put their stamp on the victory in the fourth quarter, as the Lakers couldn’t make it competitive.
Michael Frazier scored a game-high 20 points for the Vipers and Payton’s complete game ensured the Vipers would come away with the win. Bruno Caboclo tallied 18 points and Isaiah Hartenstein finished with 14 points, nine rebounds and six assists. Roger Moute a Bidias (16 points) and Dakarai Tucker (11 points) also scored in double digits for RGV.
A combined 35 points from Berry II and Machado paced the Laker, while Williams added 16 points in the losing effort. Marcus Allen also scored in double figures with 10 points.
South Bay returns home for a meeting with the Canton Charge on Saturday, January 12 at 5:00pm PT from the UCLA Health Training Center.
The NBA G League’s South Bay Lakers, the first franchise in G League history to be owned by an NBA team (Los Angeles Lakers), return for its 12th season of competition in 2018-19. The Lakers franchise has established itself as a top producer of NBA-ready talent, totaling 30 NBA Call-Ups and developing 25 Lakers assignment players since the inaugural 2006-07 season. Last season, the Lakers returned to the playoffs for the third year in a row and saw a pair of players receive NBA Call-Ups to the Los Angeles Lakers, including Andre Ingram. The Lakers have claimed three division titles and have twice competed in the NBA G League Finals, most recently in 2015-16.