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Rio Grande destroys Long Island in G-League blowout

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Mike Lawrence

In a game between the two hottest teams in the G-League, the Long Island Nets proved no competition for the Rio Grande Valley Vipers. Final score was 111-94 but the game wasn’t that close.

The Vipers, the Rockets’ G-League affiliate and now the winners of 12 straight, went up early and had a 63-35 half time lead, which ballooned to 35 before the Nets showed some life. The loss ended the Nets four-game winning streak.

Long Island attempted a comeback after the break and outscored Rio Grande Valley 59-48 in the second half. The Nets’ defense held the Vipers to 36.6 percent shooting from the field and 25.0 percent shooting from distance in the second half, but the Nets couldn’t overcome the game’s early deficit to earn a victory.

Milton Doyle, the Nets top scorer, was thwarted early, finishing with 15 points and six rebounds. He shot 5-of-13 overall and 3-of-7 from three. The big rap on Doyle has been his inconsistency. In fact, the last five games show evidence of that. In the last two games, Doyle has averaged 14.5 points and shot 29.4 percent from three. In the three games before that, he had averaged 28.7 points and shot 58 percent.

Much of Long Island’s scoring load was taken up by Jeremy Senglin, the 6’3” combo guard out of Weber State. Senglin finished with 22 points on 6-of-19 overall and 4-of-12 from deep. He also grabbed six rebounds and handed out four assists. Defensive specialist Tahjere McCall had five steals to go with 16 points. Jacob Wiley, one of the Nets two-way players went scoreless and grabbed one rebound in 20 minutes. The other two-way, Yakuba “Billy” Outtara, is with the Nets in Mexico.

The Vipers limited the Nets to just 35.2 percent shooting and forced 19 turnovers. RGV also held a dominating 60-41 advantage on the boards. Danuel House led the way for RGV with 28 points, 11 rebounds and five assists, while R.J. Hunter, who played for Long Island last season, scored 23 points with five rebounds and five assists.