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Men's Basketball: Lobos dominate in exhibition play

The University of New Mexico men’s basketball team dominated its Northern New Mexico opponent in all aspects of the exhibition matchup between the two schools on Saturday evening.

The Lobos (1-0) made 11 first-half 3-pointers to get out to an early lead and finished with a dominating performance on defense, which included forcing 18 turnovers in the second half, to will their way to a 115-66 victory over the Eagles.

“In the long run, it was really good for us,” UNM head coach Paul Weir said of the exhibition match. “The first half, in particular, really allowed us to establish some things that we’ve talked a lot about but didn’t really get in place.

“I think we finally showed some flashes of that in the second half on the defensive side of the ball.”

New Mexico got out to a fast start, scoring on its opening possession by way of a Dane Kuiper three-pointer.

That trend continued much of the first half, especially for Anthony Mathis, who was a perfect 4-of-4 from beyond the arc in the half. He finished 5-of-5 from three at the end of the game.

“We move the ball really well and a lot of players get open shots,” Mathis said. “Tonight I had a lot of open shots. When we are unselfish we are a hard team to guard.”

The Lobos had entered the half with a 63-44 lead. Northern New Mexico, by its standards, were holding up well against UNM.

But at halftime, Mathis said a spark was created to play better on the defensive end. That spark was to try to hold the Eagles to just 20 points in the second half or his team would have to wake up to practice at 5 a.m.

Vance Jackson, who had eight points and eight rebounds, lamented that sentiment.

“We was not trying to wake up at 4 a.m. to go to practice,” Jackson said.

The Lobos held the Eagles to 22 second-half points, nonetheless their defense was stellar.

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UNM opened up the second half on a 16-0 run and forced the Eagles to turn the ball over at every opportunity.

In the end, it was a blowout as the Lobos went on to defeat Northern New Mexico 115-66.

The announced attendance was 10,810.

For the Lobos, Corey Manigault and Keith McGee each had 19 points. Kuiper finished with three three-pointers.

UNM outrebounded it’s opponent 37-22. The Lobos finished 15-of-27 from beyond the arc and shot 63.6 percent from the field.

The Lobos will host Iona at home on Tuesday, Nov. 13 at 7 p.m. in their regular season home opener.

Matthew Narvaiz is a senior sports reporter for the Daily Lobo. He primarily covers football, however, he also contributes content to other sports. He can be reached at or on Twitter @matt_narvaiz.

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