FRISCO, Texas — Despite a 40-point performance from Damion James, the Legends’ rally against the Rio Grande Valley Vipers fell short in the final seconds as a sold-out home crowd witnessed a heartbreaking 109-107 defeat Saturday.
The Vipers got off to a hot start taking a 30-18 lead in the first behind 12 points from Glen Rice Jr. Tony Bishop came off the bench in the second to snag 15 and increase the Vipers’ lead to 18, the largest of the night. The Legends entered the third quarter down by 14, but found themselves with their first lead since the early minutes of the game. James posted 16 of his 40 points and Eric Griffin added 11 points and 8 rebounds to lift the Legends over the Vipers 36-20 in the third.
The fourth quarter saw three lead changes and three ties as the Legends fought for control. James knocked in two to tie the game at 107 with 48 seconds left. Clint Capela responded quickly with two for the Vipers to grab their final lead. The Legends took possession with 3.4 seconds remaining and fans roared as the final basket went in. After further review, however, referees determined the ball was tipped and the shot would not count, giving the victory to the Vipers 109-107.
Besides James, Griffin had the Legends’ only other double-double of 20 points and 19 rebounds.
The Vipers had six players in double digits with Tony Bishop coming off the bench to add a team-high 23 points.