Coming into Thursday nights game the Reno Bighorns'(12-17) center Jerome Jordan and Santa Cruz Warriors'(19-12) Travis Leslie were ranked as number two and three best players in the D-League respectively, by nba.com
But it was the Bighorns' forward Marcus Landry who had his best game of his season. He dropped in a whopping 32 points and grabbed 8 rebounds on route to a win over the visiting Warriors 113-99. He was an absolute machine from beyond the arc shooting 8-of-16.
The Warriors stuck close through the first quarter and actually held the lead early in the game. Then like a man possessed Landry and the rest of the Bighorns gained the advantage and ran away with the game.
The Warriors would fight back into the game through their strong defense. They went on a 19-5 run in the closing minutes of the third quarter to bring the Bighorns' lead down to just six. The stage was set for another gutsy and gritty comeback from the Warriors.
The Bighorns then shifted into another gear and left the Warriors in the dust with a 15-2 run to start the final frame. The lead grew to a planet sized 24 points with 5:50 remaining in the game, and there was no miracle comeback on this night for the Warriors.
All-Start game MVP Travis Leslie finished with a double-double scoring 20 points and hauling in 12 rebounds. Stefhon Hannah added 19 points and three steals.
Dar Tucker also had a double-double notching 23 points and 14 rebounds for the Reno Bighorns. Center Jerome Jordan struggled against the length of the Warriors and could only muster two points on the night.
The Warriors now trail the Bakersfield Jam by two and a half games after the loss. They also dropped to the fifth seed in playoff rankings due to the loss.
They will have a chance to make up ground in the tail end of the season as 14 of their final 19 games will be played at home. The Warriors are 9-1 this season when playing in Kaiser Permanente Arena.
Their next game will be against a struggling Maine Red Claws team that has dropped their last three contest. The Warriors are the final game in Maine's five game road trip. On the other hand, this will be the start of an eight game home stand for the Warriors.
The Warriors beat the Red Claws in their only meeting of the season on Jan. 25 in dominating fashion, 120-101. Hannah lead the Warriors on that night with 20 points. Tip-off is scheduled for Saturday at 7 p.m.