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Updated: Lobos Keep Rolling, Trounce Boise State

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Below the report are postgame interviews with UNM men’s coach Steve Alford, Lobo guard Kendall Williams and his teammate, Hugh Greenwood following UNM’s win over Boise State on Saturday.

BOISE, Idaho — It was a hell of a two weeks for the New Mexico men’s basketball team.

As a result, things are heating up around Loboland.

New Mexico capped off its crucial 13-day stretch in style here Saturday with a 65-49 rout of  Boise State. The game signaled the halfway point of the Mountain West Conference season for both teams and ended the period Lobos coach Steve Alford and his players called “13 days of hell” — which commenced after UNM suffered back-to-back losses to San Diego State and UNLV two weeks ago.

“I’m just very proud of the guys,” Alford said. “They’ve done just an unbelievable job to be where we’re at, 19-4 and 5-2 (in the MWC). I just can’t say enough about these guys. They’ve worked extremely hard. We’ve kind of put a staple on our season, and we’ve got ourselves back in the championship hunt as we go into the second half of the season.”

UNM has just one more hurdle — next Saturday at home against Wyoming — before getting rematches with San Diego State (Feb. 15 on the road) and UNLV (Feb. 18 in the Pit).

And if there was ever a chance of overlooking the Cowboys (18-5, 4-3) before those games, there shouldn’t be any longer after Wyoming beat UNLV 68-66 on Saturday.

San Diego State (19-3, 5-1) played host to TCU (13-8, 3-3) on Saturday night.

The Lobos pulled even with the 11th-ranked Rebels (21-4, 5-2) in the league standings by rolling to their fourth straight win, and all have come by double digits. UNM has outscored its opposition by an average of 23 points a game in its five league wins.

While Boise State is still winless in its first season in the MWC, this wasn’t the type of game the Broncos have had of late. BSU (10-12, 0-7) took UNLV to overtime a week earlier before losing, and missed a last-second 3-pointer on Wednesday to lose 58-56 at San Diego State.

The Lobos trailed only briefly in a first half of runs. The Broncos got back-to-back 3-pointers from Drew Wiley and Thomas Bropleh to cap an 8-0 burst that moved them in front 12-10 with 12 minutes left in the half.

But the Lobos responded with an impressive 13-0 blitz that included a pair of 3s from Phillip McDonald, a 3 from Jamal Fenton and a slam by Tony Snell.

Boise State got back within five points after a 6-0 run, but the Lobos countered with their own 6-0 burst with Snell — who had 13 points — getting another dunk. UNM led 32-25 at the half.

After Boise State’s Kenny Buckner opened the second half with a dunk, Lobos sophomore Kendall Williams took control. The 6-foot-3 guard hit a 3, made a free throw and then scored a layup off a steal to ignite his team — and seemingly take the wind out of the young Broncos.

UNM freshman Hugh Greenwood, who had 10 points, 10 rebounds and upstaged BSU’s Anthony Drmic, his former teammate on various Australian national teams, said Alford made his point in the two-week stretch.

“It was all about toughness for us,” said the 6-foot-3 Greenwood. “… We’ve got the 13 days out of the way, and I keep waiting for coach to say, ‘OK, you’ve got the 13 days out of the way. Now you’ve got another 20 to go.’ ”

NEW MEXICO 65, BOISE ST. 49
NEW MEXICO (19-4, 5-2 MWC)
Hardeman 2-3 0-0 4, Gordon 2-5 1-2 5, Greenwood 3-6 2-2 10,  Williams 7-10 3-4 18, Snell 5-12 1-1 13, Adams 0-1 0-0 0,  Dunning 0-1 0-0 0, Fenton 1-3 0-0 3, McDonald 2-6 0-0 6,  Walker 2-6 2-5 6, Bairstow 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 24-54 9-14 65.
BOISE ST. (10-12, 0-7 MWC)
Drmic 2-9 2-3 7, Bropleh 1-3 0-0 3, Buckner 4-8 3-6 11,  Marks 4-10 0-0 8, Perryman 1-5 0-0 3, Hanstad 1-3 0-0 2,  Nichols 4-9 0-0 10, Wiley 1-10 0-0 3, Watkins 1-3 0-2 2,  Crayton 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 19-61 5-11 49.
Halftime—New Mexico 32-25. 3-Point Goals—New Mexico 8-24 (Greenwood  2-4, McDonald 2-5, Snell 2-8, Fenton 1-2, Williams 1-3, Walker 0-2),  Boise St. 6-28 (Nichols 2-4, Bropleh 1-2, Perryman 1-3, Drmic 1-8, Wiley  1-9, Hanstad 0-2). Fouled Out—None. Rebounds—New Mexico 42 (Greenwood  10), Boise St. 35 (Buckner 8). Assists—New Mexico 15 (Williams 4), Boise  St. 11 (Nichols 5). Total Fouls—New Mexico 14, Boise St. 16. A—4,159.

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