PRESCOTT VALLEY, Ariz. – The Northern Arizona Suns had several impressive individual performances Wednesday night at the Findlay Toyota Center, but they couldn’t pick up the W against the Stockton Kings.
The Suns lost 123-107 to fall to 8-24 on the season, while the Kings won their second straight game to improve to 17-13.
The Kings, who entered the game with the fourth highest PACE in the NBA G League, began the game pushing the ball, scoring 20 points within the first five minutes and owning a 27-17 lead with 5:12 remaining in the opening frame. The Kings led 36-29 after the first quarter, and after again taking a 10-point lead in the second quarter, they remained up seven at halftime, 59-52.
The third quarter was all Stockton, who made seven three-pointers (7-of-14) and shot 13-of-25 from the field (.520) compared to Northern Arizona’s 9-of-25 (.360) clip. The Kings won the frame 37-28 to enter the fourth ahead 96-80. The Suns shot well in the fourth quarter, but the hole was too deep.
The main differences between the two teams tonight were three-point shooting, Stockton at 16-of-44 (.364) and NAZ at 10-of-35 (.286), assists (Stockton 29-20), fast break points (Stockton 21-2), and turnovers, as the Kings scored 20 points off of 18 takeaways, compared to NAZ’s nine points off of 13 takeaways.
Trayvon Palmer earned his fifth double-double of the season with 21 points on 6-of-9 shooting, including 4-of-6 from distance, and 13 rebounds.
Aaron Epps tied a NAZ Suns record with his 13th career double-double tonight, tying Derek Cooke Jr. and Elijah Millsap for the most double-doubles in team history. It was Epps’ second of the season, as he tallied 17 points on 8-of-13 shooting and 10 rebounds.
Matt Farrell scored his most points in a Suns jersey with 15 points on 7-of-9 shooting, to go with four assists. Ahmed Hill powered the bench with 14 points on 5-of-9 shooting, to go with four rebounds. ShawnDre Jones dished 10 assists off the bench. This was his fourth career 10+ assist game, now the third most such games in team history.
Cody Demps led Stockton with 22 points on 7-of-13 shooting, including 4-of-6 from distance, to go with seven rebounds, five assists and two blocks. DaQuan Jeffries had 17 points on 7-of-13 shooting, three rebounds, three assists, three steals and two blocks.
The Suns will next begin a back-to-back set on Friday at home against the Austin Spurs at 7 p.m. MT. The Kings next play on Saturday at the Oklahoma City Blue at 6 p.m. MT.