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Not Done Yet: Anderson and De La Cerda to Return for 2021-22

by Allison Weiss

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.— When the 2020-21 season came to a close back on March 19, seniors Jaedyn De La Cerda and Antonia Anderson had a decision to make.

They had spent four years in the Cherry and Silver, won a Mountain West Conference championship and were both named to the MW All-Conference Team, but because of the decision by the NCAA to grant an extra year of eligibility to student-athletes in 2020-21 due to COVID-19, the duo had an extra year of eligibility that they could use if they chose to.

Luckily for Lobo fans, No. 23 and No. 32 are not done yet and are returning to UNM for one more year.

“Even with the success that we had this past year, we still have unfinished business and bigger goals to accomplish,” Anderson stated. “The plan is to do that in front of our fans in The Pit.”

“Honestly, it’s a blessing to be able to play for Mike (head coach Mike Bradbury) again,” added De La Cerda. “There aren’t a lot of colleges who are bringing back two of their seniors and we were given that opportunity.

“I cannot wait to play in front of Albuquerque one more time. Let’s get to business, Lobo fans!”

A native of Roswell, N.M., De La Cerda extends her illustrious Lobo career after playing some of her best basketball in the 2020-21 season. De La Cerda started all 20 games, and averaged 28.1 minutes, 15.0 points and 5.2 rebounds per game, scoring in double figures in 17 games with 20-plus points in six games including the last two games of the season.

The guard finished the season with a team-high 300 points and was third in rebounds with 104, her highest rebounding total as a Lobo, and recorded her first double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds at Arkansas-Pine Bluff. In addition, De La Cerda led the Lobos in points per game, field goals made (107) and free-throw percentage (85.7 percent).

Anderson had an equally impressive 2020-21 campaign, averaging 24.3 minutes per game, 12.1 points per game, 6.2 rebounds per game, 1.9 assists per game, 1.0 steals per game and 1.0 blocks per game. Anderson led the Lobos in rebounds (123), was second in made field goals (98) and blocked shots (19) and third in total points (242).

Not only did the Cibolo, Texas, native surpass her rebounding and point totals from the 2018-19 season while playing 11 less games, Anderson recorded two double-doubles on the season and scored 10-plus points in 13 games and produced a career-high 29 points to propel the Lobos to a win over UNLV on Jan. 17.

Both Anderson and De La Cerda enter the 2021-22 season nearing the 1,000-point mark, with De La Cerda sitting at 893 and Anderson at 827. With 507 rebounds already, Anderson has the opportunity to become just the 17th Lobo to eclipse the 1,000 point, 500 rebound career feat.

Further, Anderson currently sits at 123 career blocks to rank fifth all-time and is within reach of second all-time.

With the return of De La Cerda and Anderson, UNM returns its top six scorers, top three rebounders and every starter from 2020-21.