The Hustle returned home to Southaven after a one game road trip up to Iowa to face the Wolves. The Hustle losing streak extended to 4 games in Iowa despite Tyler Harvey’s monster 58 point performance. Harvey hit a franchise high 12 3’s in the game, but the Hustle fell 131-128. The Hustle, without both two-way players Yuta Watanabe and Julian Washburn, May have had a tough time up against a solid Agua Caliente Clippers team. The Clippers and Hustle are essentially tied for 6th in the Western Conference going into tonight’s matchup. With a win, the Hustle would clinch the season series against the Clippers and help themselves in what is sure to be a tight playoff race.
The Hustle jumped out to an early lead behind strong performances from big men Kyle Casey and Nino Johnson. The Hustle jumped out to a 26-13 lead but the Clippers made a run late in the quarter to cut the Hustle deficit to 1 at the buzzer, 28-27. Nino Johnson led the Hustle with 6 1st quarter points, with both Dusty Hannahs and Kyle Casey dropping 5 points a piece as well in the quarter.
The Clippers jumped out to a small lead early in the quarter as both teams exchanged multiple leads throughout the 12 minute period. After 11 lead changes, the Clippers ended up with the 60-58 halftime lead over the Hustle. Angel Delgado led the Clippers with 18 points and 12 rebounds, while the Hustle got 10 points a piece from Kyle Casey and Nino Johnson. Tyler Harvey got hot to end the quarter, hitting a floater with .2 seconds left.
Jamel Artis opened up the 3rd quarter with a 3 following a broken play by the Clippers. The Hustle defense came out of the halftime break playing with extra intensity, forcing a handful of turnovers in the early minutes of the quarter. Tyler Harvey kept his hot streak going in the 3rd to help the Hustle tie the game up by the end of the quarter with both teams knotted up at 88 a piece. Tyler Harvey’s 18 points (8 in the quarter) led the Hustle, with Doral Moore dropping in 9 3rd quarter points as well. Angel Delgado couldn’t get anything going offensively for the Clippers, as he didn’t score and only brought in 3 rebounds.
The Clippers jumped out to an early 6 point lead in the 4th, but a run led by Tarik Phillip tied the game back up in the early minutes. Phillip extended his run, with some help from Tyler Harvey, to get the Hustle a 5 point lead midway in the quarter. Things got chippy in the 4th as Markel Crawford, Tarik Phillip, Jamel Artis, Angel Delgado and Clippers coach Brian Adams all picked up technical fouls in the quarter. The Hustle held a single possession lead over the last few minutes of the game, and despite a valiant effort from the Clippers, the Hustle were able to hang on and win a thriller to end their losing streak. Desi Rodriguez had a good opportunity to send the game into overtime but his layup was just short and Angel Delgado’s put back was too late as the Hustle won 114-112
Tyler Harvey led the Hustle with 27 points and 6 assists with Kyle Casey and Doral Moore both dropping 17 points. Tarik Phillip finished just shy of a triple-double, scoring 13 points to go with 9 rebounds and 8 assists. The Hustle snapped their 4 game losing streak and win a huge game that has playoff implications.