HIDALGO, Texas — The Rio Grande Valley Vipers (25-20) topped the Maine Red Claws (28-19) 137-111 tonight at State Farm Arena. The Vipers own a 14-1 all-time record versus Maine.
Houston Rockets assignee Montrezl Harrell led the Vipers with 24 points. Raphiael Putney followed with 23 points. Jaron Johnson and Will Cummings scored 19 points apiece. Jordan Hamilton scored his fifth consecutive double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Denzel Livingston also notched a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds.
The Vipers shot a season-high 57.3 percent from the field. RGV is now 12-0 this season when shooting above .500. The Vipers also made a season-high 55 field goals and tied the team’s season high in assists with 32. RGV tallied 32 assists on March 15 in a 142-121 win over the Reno Bighorns.
Coty Clarke led the Red Claws with 22 points, followed by James Young with 21 points. Omari Johnson added 15 points. Levi Randolph scored 13 points, and Marcus Thornton contributed 10 points.
Cummings made the first basket of the game with a three-pointer to put the Vipers on the scoreboard 3-0. Thornton made the first bucket for the Red Claws with a shot at the free throw line. Omari Johnson followed with a layup to tie the game at 3 points. The lead changed 12 times throughout the first quarter as each team battled for control. At the end of the first quarter, the score was knotted at 29 points.
Chris Walker made a dunk one minute into the second quarter to steal a 33-32 advantage for RGV. The Vipers held on to lead for the remainder of the game. Putney scored 11 of his 23 total points in the second frame to help the Vipers outscore the Red Claws 44-28. At halftime, RGV was on top 73-57.
The Vipers held on to their lead throughout the second half. The Vipers largest lead of the game was at the 4:25 mark in the fourth quarter. Putney made a shot from beyond the arc to put RGV ahead 131-99.