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New Mexico State clinches WAC men’s title

LAS CRUCES — Led by Jemerrio Jones’ 15 points and 23 rebounds, New Mexico State’s men’s basketball team clinched the Western Athletic Conference regular season title with an 82-58 romp over Missouri Kansas City Saturday night in the season’s final regular season game at the Pan Am Center.

Moments after the Senior Night win for the Aggies (24-5, 11-2), Grand Canyon (19-10, 8-5) eliminated the other remaining contender, defeating Utah Valley (20-9, 9-4) 60-59 in Phoenix.

Jones , added seven assists in an energetic performance, both by himself and his team.

“I’m out of compliments for him,” said NMSU coach Chris Jans in a postgame video interview. “He’s amazing with his rebounding prowess.”

Eli Chuha added 15 points and the guard tandem of A.J. Harris and Zach Lofton 13 each for NMSU, which shot 56 percent from the field.

Brandon McKissic and Marco Smith had nine points each to lead UMKC (10-19, 5-7).

Jones, Lofton, hometown guard Joe Garza and Johnathon Wilkins are the four seniors for the Aggies.

New Mexico State’s regular season finale is next Saturday at UT Rio Grande Valley. The eight-team WAC men’s tournament begins March 8 at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, Nev., with the Aggies as the top seed.


Box score: New Mexico State 82, Missouri Kansas City 58