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Lobos squash Weber State 62-32
J.R Giddens paces UNM with 18 points
By Richard Stevens (Contact)
Sunday, December 23, 2007
If you weren't sure whether you wanted to watch Lobos basketball today or battle the crowds Christmas shopping, the Lobos gave you a chance to leave The Pit early.
This game was over early and a fair portion of the announced crowd of 13,345 did slip out The Pit doors before the final buzzer.
About the only thing of interest the fans missed was watching the Lobos tie a Pit record for holding a team to 32 points. It tied a University Arena record.
But maybe there should be an asterisk by this mark. It is questionable whether that dismal point total was a product of Lobo defense or Weber State ineptitude.
The University of New Mexico ran to a 34-12 halftime lead and waltzed to a 62-32 nonconference win over the Weber State Wildcats.
In a way, the Wildcats were an early Christmas present for the Lobos and all UNM had to do was unwrap the overmatched gift from Utah. The Lobos tore through this wrapping like a six-year-old looking for the toy train he asked from Santa Claus.
The most interesting thing about this game was watching Lobos coach Steve Alford try to generate from energy and maybe interest from his Lobos. It wasn't easy.
The Lobos were led in scoring by J.R. Giddens with 18 points as UNM raised its season mark to 11-2. The UNM senior also led all rebounders with nine. Junior center Daniel Faris joined Giddens in double figures with 10. Seniors Jamaal Smith and Darren Prentice each had nine points. Smith added eight rebounds.
Weber State shot 22.9 percent from the field going 11-of-48 overall and 4-of-19 from 3-point range. UNM shot 50 percent going 22-of-44 overall and 7-of-14 from behind the line.
The Lobos next game is Dec. 27 at Hawaii.
The biggest question of the first half was whether the Wildcats would reach double figures. They did, by three points.
The Wildcats went 5-of-25 from the field and 1-of-10 from behind the 3-point line to shoot 20 percent in the first half. UNM went 12-of-24 and 4-of-7 from trey range. UNM shot 50 percent from the field.
UNM was paced in that half by Giddens with 10 points and six rebounds. Lobos Faris muscled for eight points and Prentice scored six points going two-of-two from behind the line.
The only Lobos who did not score in the first half were transfers Johnnie Harris and Monquel Pegues.
Weber State had nine turnovers to four for the Lobos. UNM had seven assists to a single assist for the 'Cats.
The Lobos raced to a 10-0 lead and at the 11:57 mark of the first half UNM was up 17-5. Weber State didn't score its first field goal until the 13:49 mark of the first half. UNM had hit 7-of-10 shots to form its 17-5 lead while the Wildcats were 2-of-8. UNM was 2-of-2 from the 3-point line and Weber was 1-of-6.
The best part of the game was if you were sitting close enough to Alford to listen to him jump on his Lobos. Not so much out of real anger, but probably trying to keep his players interested in the Wildcats, too.
Alford chewed on Faris about rebounding.
He jumped on Pegues for failing to guard the basket.
Alford complained to Gary that he was playing too slow.
Alford did some tune-up work on the officials, too.
UNM cooled a bit from the floor and at the 2:43 mark of the first half had missed nine of its last 11 shots. No big deal. Weber State was 4-of-23 from the floor and 1-of-9 from behind the line. The Wildcats were overmatched inside and outside. The only place Weber was hanging with UNM was on the boards, 17-16 in favor of the Lobos.
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