Kevin Wilson: Freedom New Mexico ENMU forward Tyler Jefferson gets his shot off over Central Oklahoma guard Tyler Phillips during the first half of Monday’s Lone Star Conference men’s crossover game at Greyhound Arena.
By Karl Terry: Freedom New Mexico correspondent
PORTALES — Fortunately personnel at Eastern New Mexico University will have the long holiday break for maintenance at Greyhound Arena — they’ll need it to replace the lights after the University of Central Oklahoma shot them out in a 103-85 win over the Greyhounds.
The 13th-ranked Bronchos (11-1) shot 59 percent from the floor, including 16-of-26 from beyond the 3-point arc, in the Lone Star Conference crossover game. The Greyhounds (3-7) shot nearly 40 percen.
“They’re very good and, honestly, they played really well,” ENMU coach Andrew Helton said of UCO. “I don’t remember even seeing a Division one team do that.”
Helton said he wasn’t real happy with the way the first half went for ENMU, saying the Greyhounds dug a hole early.
“Early in the game it was a disaster,” Helton said. “But I will say they didn’t give up, they kept battling and playing hard.”
Bronchos senior guard Dauntae Williams took the Greyhounds to school early, scoring 19 of his game-high 33 points in the first half. After junior Shane Carroll hit the second of back-to-back treys for the Bronchos with 7:10 left in the half, UCO opened up a 21-point advantage and kept it there nearly the duration.
“We were looking at putting a zone on ‘em but that’s hard when they come out and hit that many shots,” Helton said.
The Hounds closed the gap briefly to 17 points halfway through the second half after junior Max Carrier hit a pair from the line to make it 74-57. Carrier went 8-of-10 from the line and scored 18 points to lead ENMU.
Junior Stefan Mirabal of Albuquerque broke out of a three-game slump to tally 15 points, including three treys, for the Greyhounds. Mirabal dropped in 12 of those points in the first half and was the only spark for ENMU before the break.
“He’s struggled the last three games,” Helton said. “It was good to see him hit some jumpers tonight.”
Aaron Edwards scored 14 in the loss while Tralyn Harden came off the bench for 12 second half points.
Tyler Phillips scored 24 for UCO, including an 8-of-10 mark from beyond the 3-point line. June Carter scored 12 and Carroll had 10.
The Greyhounds are idle until after the holiday break.