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Four Lobos Score in Double Figures as UNM Rolls to Win Over Utah State

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.— While the three-pointers may not have been falling, the Lobo women’s basketball team was not lacking on offense as the Lobos cruised to a 93-73 win over Utah State on Wednesday night at The Pit.

Four Lobos finished in double figures, led by a game-high 21 points from Jaedyn De La Cerda, who also finished with a game-high five assists in the game and added a steal. Shaiquel McGruder was nearly unstoppable on both ends of the floor, going 6-for-7 to finish with 17 points and added a game-high 10 rebounds for her sixth double-double of the season. In addition, McGruder added three steals and a block to her stat sheet.

Antonia Anderson tied her career high with five steals in the game, two more than the Aggies had as a team, and finished with 15 points. Coming off of the bench, Paula Reus tallied 12 points and had a game-high two blocks and two steals.

As a team, the Lobos recorded 15 steals, the third time this season that the Lobos have had 15 in a game, and the 11th time finishing with double-digit steals this season.

While the score was close early on in the game, the Lobos pushed the pace to a 12-7 lead on an Anderson layup and McGruder steal and fast-break layup on consecutive plays. Utah State answered to take a one-point lead and held close, scoring the final three points of the quarter to create a tie at 22 through the first 10 minutes.

The Lobos put the game away in the second quarter, using a 10-0 run to lead 34-24 behind four-straight field goals that included back-to-back De La Cerda three-pointers and De La Cerda scoring eight of the 10 points. The Aggies got within seven at 36-29 with 4:17 left in the quarter, but the Lobos ended the second on a 15-0 run to lead 51-29 at the break.

UNM outscored USU 29-7 in the second quarter, going on a 17-2 run over nearly half of the quarter (4:58).

De La Cerda scored 10 points in the quarter, with a perfect 3-for-3 from the floor and 2-for-2 from three-point range, while Anderson added eight points and McGruder had seven points. The Lobos shot 62.5 percent in the quarter, with 17 points from turnovers and nine points on fast-break opportunities.

The run continued into the third quarter as De La Cerda opened the scoring with a layup that pushed the lead to 24, and while the Aggies got the lead down to 17 at the 6:06 mark of the third quarter, it was the closest Utah State would get for the remainder of the game.

By the end of the third quarter, the Lobos led by 30 points, 77-47, with McGruder adding eight points in the quarter on 3-for-3 shooting from the floor and a perfect 2-for-2 from the free-throw line. Reus scored six of her total in the third and De La Cerda and LaTascya Duff each had five points in the quarter as the Lobos shot 57.1 percent as a team from the floor.

UNM led by as many as 34 on a Reus steal and layup with the final margin being 20 at 93-73.

With Wednesday’s result, the Lobos have scored 90-plus points against the Aggies the last four meeting and the second time this season that De La Cerda has scored 20-plus points against Utah State and the third time in the last four meetings.

De La Cerda’s 21 points also means that the Lobos have had a player score 20-plus points in a game 18 times this season.

The Lobos improve to 21-7 (12-3 in the Mountain West) with the win and close out the regular-season home schedule against Boise State on Saturday, Feb. 19 at 1 p.m.