The Boise State Broncos missed half of their three-point shot attempts against the New Mexico Lobos on Wednesday night. It was their last miss that sealed the deal for UNM.
On a night where 10,301 fans packed into DreamStyle Arena, a.k.a. The Pit, seeing JaQuan Lyle score a career high 31 points for the hometown ‘Bos, it was a Justinian Jessup miss at the buzzer that gave New Mexico an 80-78 win in the Mountain West Conference opener for both teams.
Interesting enough, both the Lobos and Broncos shot 51% from the field. However, they went about it differently. The Broncos went 14-of-28 from three-point range, while the Lobos were only 3-of-14 from downtown. The Lobos were 26-of-43 on two-point shots, most of which came in the paint. Boise State in the same area was 13-of-25. Because of their inside presence, the Lobos were also able to make it to the free throw line more, knocking down 19-of-25, while Boise State went 10-of-14.
Boise State was able to stay in the contest with their perimeter shooting, while the Lobos were able to use free throw shooting and slashing to the basket to pull it out.
For the second consecutive game the Lobos were in single digits in turnovers. After having just nine turnovers in the win over Montana on Sunday, the Lobos had just six in Wednesday night’s contest. In the preview before the contest we talked about how imperative it was going to be for the Lobos to not turn the ball over as much against in conference foes, especially against Boise State who is known for their outside shooting. The Lobos will have to do the same Saturday against Wyoming.
Emotions running wild:
Basketball is an emotional game, and frustrations can boil over every now and then, and last night was no different. With 5:08 left to play New Mexico’s Carlton Bragg and Boise State’s RJ Williams were battling for a rebound when Williams pushed Bragg with a forearm and was called for a foul. Bragg took exception and began having words with Williams. Both were hit with a technical foul. However, Williams continued talking and clapping his hands and was then given a second technical foul and was ejected from the game (the first technical would’ve been his fifth foul anyway) and Bragg took over from there, scoring eight of his 17 points over the final five minutes to help propel UNM to victory.
As mentioned before, the Lobos will travel to meet Wyoming in Laramie on Saturday. That game will at 2 p.m. Mountain Time and will be broadcast on AT&T Sportsnet and the UNM Sports Radio Network. Wyoming will enter the game 3-6 overall and 0-1 in the MWC after losing to Air Force on Wednesday night.
Boise State, meanwhile, falls to 4-3 and 0-1 in conference, they will host Colorado State on Saturday afternoon.