Bighorns sharpen up for playoff game in Reno

Tahoe Onstage

Josh Hagins drives left past an OKC defender during a St. Paddy’s Day G League game in Reno.
Tahoe Onstage photos by Tony Contini

The Reno Bighorns are sharpening up for the NBA G League Playoffs and will battle in the Western Conference semifinal game on Tuesday, April 3, at the Reno Events Center, facing the South Bay Lakers. The contest will tip-off at 6:05 p.m. on ESPNU.

The Bighorns ended the 2017-18 regular season with a 29-21 record, clinching the Pacific Division title for the first time since the 2015-16 season as well as earning the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference, receiving a bye in the first round of playoffs, which are single elimination.

During the Tuesday night contest, all fans in attendance will receive a voucher for a free hot dog.

The South Bay Lakers defeated the Oklahoma City Blue 125-105 on Saturday in a game televised on ESPNews. The Lakers made 20 of 41 three-point shots, four coming from point guard Scott Machado, who scored a game-high 27. Reno beat South Bay in three of its four regular season games.

This marks the Bighorns’ second appearance in the second round of the NBA G League Playoffs in franchise history. The first was during the 2010-11 season.

For ticket information, phone (775) 853-8220.

In a St. Paddy’s Day game, Oklahoma City nipped the Bighorns, 121-118, as more than 2,900 Reno¬† fans looked on. Despite Oklahoma pulling away in third quarter, Reno kept it close.

The Bighorns went on a few streaks from beyond the arc, with guard Aaron Harrison finishing the game with 45 points. His contract was subsequently purchased by the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks, so Harrison won’t be available for Reno’s playoff run.

Jack Cooley and the OKC forwards played consistently physical under the boards. Cooley finished with 18 points and eight rebounds.

There were four quarters of fast breaks and quick three-point shots.

At the end of the contest, the Bighorns missed three three-point attempts in a row, fouled quickly, and OKC missed both penalty shots.

A win seemed in reach for the Bighorns. Harrison made a three and the fans rose to their feet. Reno fouled again, OKC made one, and the game ended with a final missed three-point shot.

– Tony Contini

Tahoe Onstage

Aaron Harrison drives during his 45-point game. Afterward, he was called up to the NBA.
Tahoe Onstage photos by Tony Contini

Bighorns’ mascot Bruno sits with fans during the game.

A local youth dance group performs during halftime.

Chris Payne hosts the Reno Bighorns vs the OKC Blue.

Fans of both basketball and tiny leprechaun hats attended.

A Bighorns cheerleader dances during a timeout.

A Bighorns cheerleader dances during a timeout.

A Bighorns cheerleader dances during a timeout.

Jack Cooley jumps past defenders.

Marcus Williams elevates for the lay-in.

Cody Demps works an OKC defender.

Aaron Harrison shoots a fade-away jump shot.

Assistant coach Rico Hines talks to his players during a timeout.

Aaron Harrison charges toward the net against the OKC Blue.

About Tony Contini

Photographer and journalist Tony Contini graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno with a bachelor's degree in journalism and a minor in art photography. He loves working with bands and telling stories. Photography portfolio: https://www.TonyContini.com

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