There was never a better time for a rage quit the way Northern Arizona dropped Saturday’s game at the Stockton Kings on their Video Game Night.
Down one point in the closing seconds, the Suns locked down on defense, got a stop, and had 20 seconds to convert at the other end. In a chaotic last possession, the Suns couldn’t get one to fall in their 114-113 loss.
The Suns (9-32) had their two-game winning streak snapped despite outplaying Stockton most of the way. The Kings (24-15) extended their winning spurt to three games and moved closer to the West’s three-seed.
Northern Arizona led for 41:42 of game-action, taking as much as a 13-point lead. The Kings never led by more than a point until there was 3:13 left in regulation.
The Suns carried over momentum from their top scoring night on Wednesday to shoot 13-of-20 (.650) in the first quarter, 3-of-5 from distance, taking a 31-26 lead. Stockton got within a point at halftime, 56-55. The Suns did everything well in the third quarter to take an 89-80 into the fourth quarter, where it would become a thrilling contest throughout. Neither team led by more than five in the last 10 minutes.
George King earned his team-leading 10th 20+ point game of the season tonight with 24 points on 9-of-13 shooting (4-6 3PT), eight rebounds and three assists. He followed up his career-high 28-point game to earn his first stretch of 20+ point games of his career.
Seven NAZ Suns scored in double-figures in the balanced attack, including Peter Jok (17 points, 5-8 FG, 2-3 3PT, five rebounds), Jawun Evans (16 points, three rebounds, three assists), Retin Obasohan (13 points, six assists, three rebounds), Hollis Thompson (11 points, seven rebounds, three assists, two steals), Aaron Epps (11 points, five blocks), and Eric Stuteville (10 points, 5-6 FG, six rebounds).
The Suns forced Stockton to shoot just 40-of-103 (.388) and 5-of-23 (.217) from distance. The difference came on the boards, as Stockton outrebounded NAZ 58-38, 22-6 when it came to offensive rebounds. Three Kings each grabbed 15+ rebounds, with Daniel Ochefu leading the way securing 17 boards to go with 26 points and three assists. Caleb Swanigan and Taren Sullivan each grabbed 15 rebounds, but neither achieved a double-double. Cody Demps led all scorers with 32 points
The Suns get another long break before taking on the Oklahoma City Blue on Friday back at home at 7 p.m. MT. The Kings will continue their seven-game homestand on Tuesday against the Texas Legends at 8 p.m. MT.