Alex Kirk stuffed the stat line with 16 points, 14 boards and three assists and three blocks. Cameron Bairstow added 18 points (making 10-11 free throws) and seven rebounds. Cullen Neal had his college career with 15 points, nine of them from long range. Kendall Williams rounds out the double digit scorers with 12 points.
Davidson was seriously handicapped with their leading scorer De'Mon Brooks sidelined with a groin injury. Brian Sullivan did his best to pick up the slack going for 17 points off of four three pointers and dishing out six dimes. Tyler Kalinoski added 16 points and Jack Gibbs pitched in 11 points.
The Lobos would have liked to be playing in the championship game, but UMass spoiled that on Friday trouncing the Lobos 81-65. Nonetheless, New Mexico returned to form playing solid defense and finding quality shots. The Lobos held Davidson to 58 points (albeit without their leading scorer) and shot 46 percent.
In the end, this was a very business-like win. This was a game the Lobos had to win. They will go back to Albuquerque on a winning note, and just maybe with a little chip on their shoulder.
Hopefully New Mexico uses this trip east as a learning experience. The Lobo's defense against quick, capable guards was seriously exposed. UMass' Chaz Williams and UAB's Chad Frazier carved up the Lobo's defense with ease. New Mexico has to find a way to guard against the penetration.
On the offensive end, the Lobos seemed to find their stride against Davidson, but they have to get more help from the backcourt. Hugh Greenwood and Cleveland Thomas are natural shooters who need to help out Kirk, Bairstow, and Williams.
The Lobos get the week off to work things out. It's going to be close whether they remain a nationally ranked team-that loss to UMass is sure to cast doubts. The Lobos host the 5-0 San Diego Toreros on November 30, 3:00 p.m. ET (1:00 p.m. MT).