EL SEGUNDO – The South Bay Lakers dropped their second consecutive game as they fell to the Oklahoma City Blue, 127-119, on Saturday night. Scott Machado tallied a career-high 18 assists and the Lakers (26-17) hit a season-high 21 three pointers, but they could not hold on down the stretch. Daniel Hamilton led the Blue (23-20) with 23 points, 13 rebounds and eight assists as Oklahoma City swept the season series, 3-0, over South Bay.
The Lakers took a 38-26 lead through one as Robert Heyer scored 11 points in the period. Bryce Alford paced the Blue with 14 points of his own. The Lakers maintained their lead at the half, 68-59, as Stephaun Branch scored 10 points off the bench in the second quarter.
College teammates Demarcus Holland (10 points) and Javan Felix (11 points) went back-and-forth in the third quarter as South Bay held the slight 100-98 lead after three. Hamilton scored 11 points in the fourth quarter as the Blue’s depth prevailed over the shorthanded Lakers who only saw seven players log minutes in the loss.
Hamilton’s near triple double fueled the Blue down the stretch, while Justin Leon notched a double-double of his own with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Alford led the Blue in scoring with 26 points, as he hit 8-16 from three-point range. Felix (19 points), Yannis Morin (13 points, nine rebounds), Rashawn Thomas (12 points) and Mike Cobbins (10 points) all scored in double digits for Oklahoma City.
Machado’s 21 points and 18 assists paced the Lakers, who were without Alex Caruso, as he sat out the game with a right knee contusion. Heyer picked up his first career double-double with 13 points and a career-high 12 rebounds. James Southerland scored 21 points and hit 5-10 from beyond the arc and Branch and Andre Ingram each scored 20 points off the bench. Ingram shot 6-9 from three and grabbed a season-high six rebounds. Holland (13 points, six rebounds, career-high seven assists) and Michael Holyfield (11 points, seven rebounds) rounded out the scoring for South Bay as all seven players scored in double digits.
The South Bay Lakers will return to action a week from tonight, when they host the Rio Grande Valley Vipers on Saturday, March 10 at 7:00 from the UCLA Health Training Center.