66ers Fall to Toros, Head Home

AUSTIN, Texas, March 2, 2010 – Despite double-doubles from Mustafa Shakur and Oklahoma City Thunder assigned guard Kyle Weaver, the Tulsa 66ers fell behind early and could not catch the Austin Toros, coming up short 95-87 Tuesday night at the Austin Convention Center. Shakur finished with 16 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds, while Weaver had 15 points and 10 boards. Thunder assigned center Byron Mullens scored a team-high 21 points and grabbed eight rebounds.

A steal from Curtis Jerrells and subsequent alley-oop dunk by Dwayne Jones capped a 12-4 run by the Toros to start the game. Jerrells and Jones each scored seven points in the first quarter, as the Toros shot 9-of-19 from the field, and 6-for-9 from the free throw line. Thunder assigned center Byron Mullens scored 10 first quarter points, as the 66ers shot 9-for-21 from the field but gave up 11 points off of five turnovers.

The Toros built as much as a 13-point advantage at 47-34 after two Jones free throws with 3:50 remaining in the first half. But a Moses Ehambe jumper sparked an 11-4 run to finish the half for the 66ers, as Mullens buried a three-pointer at the buzzer to cut into the Toros lead at 51-45 at halftime. Ehambe scored 10 second quarter points, as the 66ers shot 73.3 percent (11-15) from the field. Mullens scored 17 points in the first half. Jones contributed nine points in the period, as the Toros made 11-of-23 attempts.

Two straight buckets by Weaver got the 66ers to within two at 51-49 with 9:50 left in the third quarter. But two three-pointers by Alonzo Gee, and another from Eddie Basden, on top of three turnovers by Tulsa, catapulted the Toros on a 13-0 run to give them a 64-49 edge with 5:33 left in the period. A lay up by Weaver capped a 15-5 run by the 66ers to get within 69-64 with under a minute remaining, but Tulsa went into the final quarter trailing 73-64. The 66ers shot 7-for-19 in the quarter, as Weaver had 10 points in the quarter. The Toros shot 6-for-18, led by Gee with eight points in the third.

Following a Shakur three-pointer with 6:07 remaining in the game that brought the 66ers to within 85-76, the Toros went on a 5-0 run to put the game out of reach. The Toros shot 6-of-14 from the field and 9-of-13 from the free throw line in the quarter, led by Jones with seven points. Shakur scored 12 fourth quarter points, as Tulsa outrebounded the Toros 15-7 in the final period.

The 66ers outrebounded the Toros 44-38, but gave up 32 points off of 22 turnovers. The Toros took advantage of their edge at the charity stripe, connecting on 25-of-38 attempts compared to 9-of-14 for the 66ers.

Led by Mullens, Shakur and Weaver, the 66ers (19-16) finished with five players in double-figure scoring. Ehambe had 13 points off the bench. Deron Washington added 10 points.

The Toros (23-12) finished with four players in double figures. Gee led the scoring with a game-high 28 points and seven rebounds, while Jones contributed a double-double with 26 points, including 10-17 from the free throw line, and 14 boards. Jerrells and Basden each finished with 12 points.

The 66ers will return home for a rematch with the Toros on Thursday, Mar. 4 at 7 p.m. . It’s “College Night” and there are $2 draft beer specials during the game. Tulsa will then play against the number two selection in the 2009 Draft Hasheem Thabeet and the Dakota Wizards on “Thunder Night” on Friday, Mar. 5 at 7 p.m., before facing the Fort Wayne Mad Ants in a back-to-back set on Sunday and Monday.

Updated 03-03-2010

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