ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – They went in as a nine-and-a-half point underdog. When the clock expired at McKeon Pavillion the visiting UNM Lobos walked out with a 69-65 victory over the Gaels of St. Mary’s.
The Lobos victory ended a 29-game home win streak against nonconference opponents, dating back to the 2019-2020 season. The win has the Lobos enjoying their best start in ten years at 7-0.
The game did not start well for the Lobos as they were 4 of 14 shooting and fell behind to a 13-2 deficit. The Lobos slowly chipped away the lead and found themselves up at halftime 27-24. St. Mary’s made a run at the Lobos multiple times, but could never grab the lead.
The only lead change was when the Lobos went ahead on a deep three from Jaelen House in the first half to lead 25-22. House finished the game with a team-high 17 points, 1 assist, 5 rebounds, and 6 steals. Five Lobos finished in double figures with freshman Donovan Dent, scoring 13 points on 5 of 8 shooting. He also had 6 rebounds. Lobos forward Morris Udeze also finished with 13 points, despite getting into early foul trouble in the first half.
Jamal Mashburn Jr. finished the game with 12 points, mostly from the second half. Mashburn Jr. helped the Lobos maintain their advantage through most of the second half.
“I thought the second half we did a great job of adjusting offensively because they were terrific defensively,” said Lobos head coach Richard Pitino. “We did a much better job of being patient, stopped over dribbling, we didn’t turn the ball over.” Lobos forward Josiah Allick had 10 points and 7 rebounds.
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Alex Ducas scored a game-high 25 points for St. Mary’s in the loss. The Lobos will host Western New Mexico Tuesday. St. Mary’s is now 6-2 and has a date with top-ranked Houston Saturday.