The Memphis Hustle lost for the first time this season, falling 125-118 to the South Bay Lakers Saturday night, Dec. 7, at UCLA Health Training Center in El Segundo, Calif. The Hustle shot a season-low 37.7 percent from the field (37-99 FG) while South Bay was an efficient 53.3 percent overall (49-92 FG).
Trailing by 16 entering the fourth quarter, and by as many as 19, Memphis opened the fourth quarter on a 21-7 run to cut the lead to 104-102 with 6:42 remaining. The Hustle took the lead back at 113-110 courtesy of an Ahmad Caver three with 3:46 remaining. However, the Lakers closed the final 1:56 on a 10-0 run to seal the victory.
Memphis trailed by just three at halftime (59-56) despite shooting just 34.8 percent (16-46 FG) from the field and 28.6 percent (8-28 3P) from long range. The difference came in the third quarter, where the Hustle were outscored 38-25. South Bay shot 63.5 percent (14-22 FG) in the period while knocking down 5-of-8 three-point attempts.
South Bay outscored Memphis 70-36 in the painted area to go with the advantage from its reserves and assisted on 33 of its 49 made baskets. Memphis, who entered the night leading the league in three-point percentage, shot a season-low 30.0 percent from three-point range (18-60 3P).
Dusty Hannahs led Memphis with 28 points, shooting 5-of-11 from long range. Josh Jackson finished with 21 points and eight rebounds to go with a pair of steals. Matt Mooney added 19 points while also pouring in five three-pointers. Caver totaled a season-high 15 points in a reserve role. Marquis Teague (13 points) and Jarrod Uthoff (12 points) also reached double figures.
South Bay got massive contributions from its bench, outscoring Memphis’ reserves 74-38. Andre Ingram (22 points) and Zach Norvell Jr. (21 points) led the Lakers in scoring off the bench. Devontae Cacok had 14 points and a game-high 15 rebounds. Gary Payton II (14 points, 11 assists) also recorded a double-double for South Bay. Kostas Antetokounmpo tallied 16 points on 7-of-10 shooting.
The team will finish its four-game road trip out west against the Agua Caliente Clippers on Monday, December 9 at 1 p.m. inside Toyota Arena. The Hustle return to Landers Center on Wednesday, December 11 to take on Midwest Division rival Sioux Falls Skyforce at 7 p.m.