The win keeps the Lobos, ranked 19th in this
week’s AP poll
and 18th in the Coaches poll, atop the Mountain West Conference
a half-game lead over the Colorado St. Rams. UNM stands at 21-4,
9-2 in MWC
play. Fresno falls to 8-15 and 2-8 in league play.
Down 48-45 with 3:40 to play the Lobos finished
the game on
a 9-0 run. Forward Cameron Bairstow slammed home a dunk that
pushed UNM into a
49-48 lead, capping a sequence where the Lobos grabbed five
offensive boards to
produce four points.
The Lobos defensive effort reached a zenith in the
final four minutes it had been building to since the beginning of
half as New Mexico held the Bulldogs scoreless down the stretch
and to just one
field goal over the game’s final 10:20.
It was quite a turnaround as Fresno St.
countered a 16-9
Lobo start with a 14-0 run of their own on their way to 31-20
UNM opened te second frame on a 7-0 run then
into the Bulldogs lead until it was able to post a defensive
stalemate in the
final 10 minutes
The Lobos had three players in double figures
each with 10
points - Tony Snell, Kendall Williams and Alex Kirk.
by guard Kevin Olekaibe, who scored 11 points, and Kevin Foster
who posted a
double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Cameron Bairstow
pulled in 10
rebounds and scored 6 points for UNM, which outrebounded the ‘Dogs
UNM shot just 26.9 percent (7-of-26) in the
first half but
finished with 21 of 56 shooting for 37.5 percent.
Fresno shot 39.3 percent (11 of 28) in the
first half then shot
just 7 of 27 in the second half to finish 18 of 55 (32.8 percent)
for the game.