Late 3-pointer car­ries Leg­ends past Toros

Austin American-Statesman - - SPORTS - By­trav­isatkins Amer­i­can-states­man Cor­re­spon­dent

CEDAR PARK — The Austin Toros erased a 20-point third-quar­ter deficit only to lose on a 3-pointer in the wan­ing sec­onds by Dar­ius Rice as the Texas Leg­ends took a 105-102 vic­tory in an NBA D-League game Sun­day af­ter­noon at Cedar Park Cen­ter.

The Toros (7-7) have dropped four of their last five games. The Leg­ends im­proved to 9-5.

Austin had the ball and was trail­ing 102-101 with 39 sec­onds left. Af­ter a mad scram­ble un­der the bas­ket, Pa­trick Sul­li­van was fouled. Leg­ends coach Ed­uardo Na­jera ar­gued the call and was as­sessed a tech­ni­cal foul.

Corey Joseph made the tech­ni­cal free throw to tie the game, but Sul­li­van missed both of his free throws. Then Rice sank a trey with 3 sec­onds left.

“We prob­a­bly got put into a ro­ta­tion sit­u­a­tion there, but that’s one where our guy con­tested it,” Toros coach Tay­lor Jenk­ins said. “You live with it and have a chance to tie the game on the other end. But that play does not speak to what the game was, in my opin­ion.”

The Toros turned the ball over 13 times in the first half and fell be­hind 5144 at in­ter­mis­sion.

“Our sec­ond quar­ter had no life,” Jenk­ins said. “We just got off the road, but still, I was dis­ap­pointed with our ef­fort. When we’re down 20, that’s when we re­spond, in­stead of try­ing to be up 20.”

Ja­marr San­ders’ soar­ing dunk with 8:37 left in the fourth quar­ter cut the Leg­ends’ lead to 89-80. San­ders and Tre Kel­ley com­bined for 23 fourthquar­ter points to spear­head the come­back.

“We don’t have any quit in us,” San­ders said. “But by the same to­ken, we’d rather play like we did at the end for a full 48 min­utes.”

Kel­ley and San­ders led the Toros in scor­ing with 26 and 21 points, re­spec­tively. Joseph had 12 points as six Austin play­ers fin­ished in dou­ble dig­its.

“The come­back started on the de­fen­sive end, and we kind of let it lead to our of­fense,” Kel­ley said. “As far as my in­di­vid­ual game, I just had a lit­tle rhythm that I haven’t had in a while.”

The Toros’ lead­ing scorer, Justin Dent­mon, missed his sec­ond straight game with a ham­string in­jury. Next up for the Toros’ will be the Idaho Stam­pede at 1 p.m. Thurs­day at home.

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