The No. 9-ranked Pima men’s basketball team struggled against Dawson (Mont.) Buccaneers on the second day of the Aztec Classic on Tuesday night, losing 113-86, at the school’s West Gym.
Turnovers were critical for the Aztecs as Pima (11-4) finished with 26 compared to Dawson’s 16. The Buccaneers also outshot the Aztecs from the field, 49 percent to 44 percent.
The Aztec offense struggled to get anything going after leading 20-19 with 11:05 left in the first quarter.
The Buccaneers (14-1) eventually found their offensive rhythm and went on a 27-7 run before an Aztec timeout was called with Pima trailing 46-27 with 3:51 before halftime.
Pima found a little bit of life following halftime, shortening its deficit to 54-42 going into the fourth quarter.
The Aztecs cut the lead to seven points with 13:40 remaining in the first half but they could not get closer.
Pima was outscored 59-44 in the second half.
Forward Traivar Jackson led Pima with 21 points, seven rebounds and four blocks. Guard Griffin Effenberger followed with 16 points, four rebounds and four assists.
Pima will host the final Aztec Classic game on Wednesday against Eastern Wyoming College at 4 p.m.
NOTE: Pima forward Daniel Moody (Walden Grove graduate) was recognized by the ACCAC as player of the week over the break. It was his 30-point game against Arizona Sol that earned him the honors. Moody went 12-of-17 from the field in that game, including going 7-of-7 in the second quarter. He also earned a double-double with 10 rebounds.