The University of New Mexico men’s basketball team survived their season opener on the road with a hard fought 87-84 victory over Cal State Northridge Tuesday night. The Matadors tied the game with only six seconds to play.
Lobos guard and three point specialist Anthony Mathis answered with a deep three, leaving only one second on the clock. “I looked up and had five seconds left,” said Mathis. “I took a couple of dribbles. I saw the defenders hand was down and I saw a clean look. Just threw it up and thank God it went in.”
Mathis finished with 12 points in a Lobos win that started off sloppy for the visitors. The Lobos didn’t get their first field goal until the 14:45 mark of the first half. Dane Kuiper scored two of his 15 points and made it a two point game. The Lobos and Matadors were all tied at the half at 42 points each.
Lamine Diane kept the Matadors in the game on his way to a game high 34 points. His teammate Terrell Gomez finished with 21 points on the night. The Lobos had four players in double figures. Makauch Malauch had 15 points for the Lobos.
Corey Manigault led the Lobos with 16 points. The had trouble taking care of the basketball with 20 turnovers to that of 14 for the Matadors. “I think our veterans were terrific,” said Lobos head coach Paul Weir. “You know Dane, Anthony, Makuach, even Vlad to an extent, guys that have kind of been here, it wasn’t there first rodeo. They were much more prepared for the environment. It was our newer guys. It was there first time. It’s really there first division one basketball game for a lot of them.”
The Matadors won the battle on the glass with 41 rebounds to that of 36 for the Lobos. The Matadors also led the Lobos in fastbreak points at 12-6 and points in the paint at 44-24.
The Lobos shot the ball better from the free throw line and from the field. A three point shot won it for the Lobos as they shot over 42 percent from the arc while the Matadors only hit 35 percent of their three point shots. The Lobos will play Northern New Mexico in an exhibition game Saturday at Dreamstyle Arena Saturday as a part of the New Mexico Classic.