RENO, Nev. – Elijah Millsap has been Mr. Consistent for the Northern Arizona Suns all season, but what he did Saturday night in Reno was unprecedented.
Millsap had a monster game, scoring a career-high 38 points, which was also the most points scored by a Suns player in team history, in Northern Arizona’s 124-116 loss to the Reno Bighorns at the Reno Events Center. The Alabama-Birmingham alum achieved his 13th double-double of the season, as he added 11 rebounds, four assists, two steals and a block to his total.
The Suns finished their inaugural season 22-28 and split the season-series 2-2 with the Bighorns, who finished the year 21-29.
Millsap led the Suns on a big comeback late, as his team struggled to keep up at the beginning of this one. Reno led 25-9 run just over halfway through the first quarter and took a commanding 13-point lead into the locker room.
Northern Arizona went to work in the third quarter, scoring the first five points of the frame and chipping away enough to where they took the lead 81-78 with 3:51 left in the same quarter. After three, the Suns had an 87-84 lead, as they outscored the Bighorns 30-14 in the frame. Millsap was the main reason for the turnaround with his 3-of-4 clip from beyond the arc. He scored 23 points in the second half.
A back-and-forth final frame saw a 114-114 tie with 1:55 left. From there, Reno outscored the Suns 10-2.
Pe’Shon Howard dominated in the fourth, scoring 22 points on 7-of-8 shooting, as part of his team-high 33 points. He earned his on 11-of-19 shooting, including 4-of 6 from downtown and 7-of-8 from the free throw line, to go with five rebounds, two assists and three steals.
Millsap bested his previous career-high of 35 points on Nov. 23 at Los Angeles, which was a double-overtime affair. He made a career-high seven three-pointers on 12 attempts.
Millsap wasn’t alone, however, as Joe Jackson scored a season-high 17 points. Jackson got the start tonight, playing in his first game since March 7. He made 6-of-9 field goals to go with eight assists and five rebounds.
Xavier Silas scored 20 points on five made three-pointers, earning his ninth 20+ point game of the season. Josh Gray rounded out the double-digit scoring for the Suns, earning 11 points, seven rebounds and five assists off the bench.
Isaiah Cousins had a solid night for Reno, recording 25 points, nine rebounds and seven assists. Luis Montero led the Reno bench with 14 points and 11 rebounds, achieving the Bighorns’ lone double-double.
Both teams are now done for the year. Northern Arizona finished eighth in the Western Conference, with Reno a game behind in the ninth-seed.