ALBUQUERQUE — Eastern New Mexico University’s women did a nice job of hanging with the New Mexico Lobos Tuesday night.
Unfortunately for the Zias, they weren’t able to shake their shooting woes.
Seniors Porche Torrance and Caroline Durbin combined for 26 points and 16 rebounds and New Mexico, which itself struggled to get any offense for a long time, pulled away with a 17-0 second-half run for a 54-33 win at The Pit.
Torrance finished with 14 points and nine rebounds and Durbin added 12 and seven for UNM (1-3), coming off a two-point loss to No. 13 Oklahoma on Saturday in which the Lobos led for more than 35 minutes.
Junior guard Hannah Altheide had 10 points for the Zias (1-4), but ENMU shot just 22 percent — 6-of-25 in the first half, 5-of-25 in the second.
Still, the Zias made a game of it for quite a while.
ENMU (1-4) was hit with a 12-0 run after senior forward Precious Herrin broke the scoring ice at the 18:45 mark of the first half.
Down 22-9 with 6 1/2 minutes left in the half, the Zias held New Mexico without a field goal for more than five minutes and got as close as six points. Altheide then hit a 3-pointer in the closing seconds to cut UNM’s lead to 27-19 at the half.
Baskets by Altheide and Karen Grant made it 27-23 two minutes into the second half, but ENMU then went nearly nine minutes without scoring as the Lobos opened a 44-23 advantage.
New Mexico shot just 26 percent in the first half, including 0-of-8 from 3-point range, but stayed in control by hitting 11-of-12 free throws. The Lobos warmed up slightly after the break, going 10-for-25 to finish at 32 percent (18-of-56) overall.
The taller Lobos dominated the glass 50-35, although Zias senior guard Tori Northcutt led everyone with nine rebounds.
ENMU returns to action on Dec. 2 at Oklahoma Panhandle State in a rematch of the Zias’ 100-96 win last week at Greyhound Arena.