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Lobos Lead From Start to Finish in Win over Utah State

LOGAN, Utah – There was no third quarter comeback needed as The University of New Mexico Lobos led from start to finish in a commanding 93-55 win over Utah State on Sunday.

The Lobos  (11-3, 8-3 MW) were once again led by LaTascya Duff, who went 6-for-9 from three and 9-for-12 from the floor, for 28 points in 23 minutes. Sunday’s contest marked the third-straight game that Duff has finished with 20-plus points and led the Lobos in scoring, as well as the third game this season that the junior has made six three-pointers in a MW game. Further, Duff has made six three-pointers in two of the last three games and three of the last five games.

Duff was one of five players to finish in double figures with Corina Carter and Ahlise Hurst scoring 12 points each off the bench and LaTora Duff and Jaedyn De La Cerda posting 11 points. LaTora went 3-for-4 from behind the arc while six Lobos hit at least one three. Antonia Anderson was one point and one rebound shy of a double-double.

As a team, UNM made 15 three-pointers with 11 occurring in the first 20 minutes. It was the eighth time this season that the Lobos have registered 10 or more threes, the ninth time that the Lobos have scored 80 or more points and the fourth time that the Lobos have passed 90 points.

The Lobos opened up scoring the first seven points of the game on a De La Cerda layup, a LaTora three and two free-throws from De La Cerda. The lead continued to build with the Lobos limiting the Aggies to seven points in the first quarter and took a 19-7 lead into the end of the quarter.

De La Cerda matched USU’s total point production alone in the first quarter with Hurst closely behind with six points.

UNM continued to push the lead at the start of the second quarter with back-to-back threes from LaTora and LaTascya, with the lead ultimately reaching 20-plus points on another LaTascya three that made it 35-13 with 5:14 left in the quarter.

The Lobos closed with the final seven points of the quarter to take a 53-19 lead into the break, with UNM outscoring USU 34-12 in the quarter.

LaTascya posted 21 points on 5-for-8 shooting from three-point range and a perfect 4-for-4 from the free-throw line in the first half alone to outscore the entire Aggie team.

The lead extended to its largest point of the game at 41 points on a Carter layup at 75-34 with 2:55 remaining in the third quarter, part of a 9-0 run for the Lobos, before the quarter ended on a 6-0 run by the Aggies.

UNM’s lead reached as low at 28 points with 8:20 left in the game, but a three by Carter followed by a layup by Carter pushed the lead back up to 40 at 93-53 for the final Lobo points in the game.

Coming into the game, Utah State was third in the MW and 21st in the NCAA in defensive rebounds per game at 29.8, but the Lobos outrebounded USU 46-41 overall, with the Lobos collecting 12 offensive rebounds and 34 defensive rebounds, while Utah State had just 30 defensive rebounds.

The defense forced 17 Aggie turnovers with 20 of UNM’s points coming off of turnovers and 40 points in the paint.

The Lobos and Aggies close out the series on Monday at 2 p.m. MT on the Mountain West Network.