New Mexico’s trip to New Mexico State for the first meeting between the two squads was a disappointing one as the Lobos fell 78-59 in Las Cruces.
UNM couldn’t get anything going during the first appearance in the Rio Grande Rivalry. The team couldn’t garner a lead at any point of the game in front of a petite crowd of 885.
The offense only managed 59 points despite shooting the ball a total of 59 times. Cumulatively, UNM shot a measly 39 percent from the field and a horrendous 35.7 percent from the charity stripe.
Head coach Yvonne Sanchez said in the preseason that she anticipated faulty shooting nights like this one, but it would be up to her defense to pick up the slack. However, that was certainly not the case on Tuesday night.
New Mexico (1-1) could only hold the Aggies to 47.5 percent from the field, and sent NMSU to the line 20 times. New Mexico State (2-0) fared much better from the line, converting 15 of their 20 free throw attempts.
“The last two games, I haven’t liked our defense,” Sanchez said in a release.
Sanchez didn’t place all of the blame on her shaky defense in the contest. The Lobos have taken pride on their ability to pound the ball inside to the team’s bigs for some easy buckets. The head coach said the squad didn’t abide to the team’s strengths.
“… Our guards have to do a better job of getting the ball inside and when they do, our posts have to make layups,” Sanchez said in the statement.
Although the Lobos trailed for the entire contest, Sanchez said there was a point in the game where UNM had opportunity to change the flow of the game, but just couldn’t manage to get into rhythm.
“There was a point where we could have made a run,” she said in the release. “We could have been down sic or four had we made a couple layups. Instead we didn’t and then we couldn’t get stops."
It wasn’t the veterans on the roster UNM turned to for points for the second straight contest. In the second game of the contest it was a freshman to set the scoring tone for the rest of the group.
Emily Lines finished her nights scoring 14 points in her 10 minutes of play. The freshman was perfect from behind the arc, going 3-3 in addition to collecting a board for her team.
Senior forward Khadijah Shumpert led UNM with nine boards, but her physical play was not well received fouling out for the second night in a row.
Liam Cary-Eaves is the sports editor for the Daily Lobo. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on twitter @Liam_CE.