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Men's basketball: Lobos drop three at Hawaii tourney

New Mexico hit a slump heading into the Mountain West schedule after dropping three games in the Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic.

The sweep at the tournament extends a Lobo losing streak to four straight games when coupled with nonconference home loss to Rice, a game where UNM called a timeout it didn’t have just prior to the end of regulation. The Lobos (7-6) lost five of their last seven games.

In two games in Hawaii, UNM scored two of its lowest point totals this season with Wednesday’s 96-66 loss to Brigham Young and Friday’s 82-59 setback to Washington State in the seventh-place game. Only against Purdue earlier this month had the Lobos scores fewer.

UNM also led only once against either Brigham Young or Washington State, and that came when the Lobos scored on the opening possession against BYU. WSU led wire-to-wire in a game where UNM shot 40 percent (20 of 50) and missed all 10 3-point attempts.

New Mexico also lost Monday’s Diamond Head opener to Auburn 83-78. With the nonconference portion over, New Mexico enters MW play Dec. 30 against Nevada with a 7-6 overall record.

Guard Elijah Brown and forward Tim Williams, who have established themselves as the most consistent Lobo scorers this year, netted double figures in all three games. Brown erupted to 33 points against Auburn then scored 16 against BYU and another 15 against WSU. Williams, meanwhile, hit 16 against both BYU and WSU after a 10-point effort versus Auburn.

Guard Cullen Neal reached double digits in the first two games, 21 against Auburn and 14 against BYU. Guard Jordan Hunter had 10 against WSU, a career high for the freshmen.

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