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SB Mavericks crush Metroplex Lightning, 146-92, for Tucker’s 600th career victory

By Kirk Copeland
(318) 525-8853 cell
kirk@abamavericks.com

Saturday, January 3rd

(Shreveport, LA.) – The Shreveport-Bossier Mavericks and head coach Steve Tucker continue to rewrite the history books.

With a convincing 146-92 win over the Metroplex Lightning Saturday night at Hirsch Memorial Coliseum, the Mavericks not only won their 74th straight game overall and 78th consecutive home game, but also provided Tucker with his 600th career victory as a head coach.

“I never imagined I’d win 600 games when I first got into coaching, and I feel very fortunate to have won this one,” said Tucker, who was recognized for his accomplishments post-game by several members of the Mavericks staff, coaches and players. “There are a lot of coaches and a lot of players that have contributed to this, and I saw a lot of their faces tonight. There are lots of great memories when you accomplish something like this.

“When you consider the health situation last season (when Tucker missed the beginning of the season following a heart attack), I feel really blessed to have gotten the chance to keep going. I want to thank our staff for the ceremony after the game. It was very special to me. I want to thank the coaches and players that made this possible. Mostly, I want to thank my friend (Mavericks owner) Jerry Nelson for allowing me to do what I do. It’s very special.”

In order for Tucker to write his name in the record books, it took a solid effort from the entire roster of the Mavericks (14-0) to fight off a game challenge from Metroplex (6-4).

The Lightning got off to a great start, giving the Mavericks their largest deficit of the season three times in the first quarter. Metroplex took leads of 5-0, 7-2, and 10-5 before Shreveport-Bossier could right the ship. Center Jon Rogers had his best of many great games this season, scoring 15 of his 18 points in the first quarter.

“We didn’t get off as good as we would have liked to in the first,” said Rogers, who added nine rebounds and three vicious blocked shots to his stat line. “We got some things going, though. I was having some success in the post, and guys were finding me.”

The Mavericks then erupted in the second quarter, outscoring the Lightning 46-21 to take firm control of the game.

“I thought the start was more them than us,” said Tucker. “They shot really well early, and played really good basketball in that first quarter. After that, I felt like we wore them down, which is what we do. We had our way with them over those last three quarters.”

Tony Hooper and Chris Hagan, two of the Mavs’ eight players to score in double figures on the night, led the charge in the second quarter, scoring 10 and nine points respectively in the period. Hooper finished with 18 points, three rebounds, five assists and four steals, while Hagan led the Mavs with 19 points, five rebounds and seven assists.

“Scoring is not what I’m here for,” said Hagan. “My responsibility in Coach T’s system is to distribute the ball and get everybody involved. My shot was falling tonight, though.”

Other notables for the Mavericks included Josh Pace (18 points, four rebounds), P.J. Couisnard (15 points, seven rebounds), Anthony Jackson (14 points, five steals), Brandon Davis (12 points, game-high 10 rebounds, two blocks, two steals), and Jermaine Blackburn (11 points, two steals). Shreveport-Bossier shot 58.5% from the field while holding Metroplex to just 39.3%.

The Mavericks now face the Texas RimRockers Sunday afternoon at 4 p.m. at Hirsch, as Tucker shoots for win number 601.

“It’s a privilege to play in Coach T’s system, and for us to come out and pick up this win for Coach is very special,” said Rogers, who finished a perfect 7-for-7 from the field. “He’s one of the best coaches anywhere.”

Tickets for 2014-15 Shreveport-Bossier Mavericks games are on sale now at www.sbmavs.com or at Hirsch Memorial Coliseum box office, which can be reached at (318) 631-4930.

The Shreveport-Bossier Mavericks and KSLA News 12 have partnered to give you the latest Mavs news and fun giveaways right on your smartphone. All you have to do is text “Mavericks” to 81212 to get involved

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