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Mashburn’s Late Threes Lift New Mexico to 83-82 Win at Nevada

by Steve Kirkland

RENO, Nev. – The New Mexico men’s basketball team used two late three-pointers from Jamal Mashburn, Jr. to down Nevada 83-82 on Tuesday night at the Lawlor Events Center. The Lobos (20-5, 8-4 MW) won their fourth straight road game while handing the Wolf Pack (19-6, 6-5 MW) just their second home loss of the season.

Mashburn led the Lobos with 17 points, highlighted by a game-tying three with 1:13 to play and the go-ahead three with 22.4 seconds left. Jaelen House added 13 points and four assists, while Mustapha Amzil had 12 points off the bench. Nelly Junior Joseph had his fifth double-double of the season with 11 points and a game-high 13 rebounds, while JT Toppin just missed a double-double with 11 points and nine rebounds. Donovan Dent had nine points to go with seven assists.

Both teams got off to a strong offensive start as the game was tied 11-11 after five minutes of play. The Lobos used a 10-1 run to take a 23-14 lead with 10:15 left in the period. UNM led 34-22 with 5:40 to play and held a 40-29 advantage with 3:00 to play. Nevada would get as close as seven in the final minutes before UNM took a 45-35 lead into the break. House had 11 first-half points to lead New Mexico.

In the second half, Nevada used an early 11-2 run to cut the margin to 49-48 with 16:25 left in the game and tied the game, 50-50, with 16:00 left. A 10-0 Lobo run gave them a 62-52 lead with 11:45 left in the game as they led 64-54 at the midway point of the half. The Wolf Pack cut the lead to 66-62, with 7:50 to play before UNM pushed the lead to 71-62 with 6:30 to go. An 11-0 Nevada run gave it a 73-71 lead with 4:15 to play before an Amzil triple gave the Lobos a 74-73 lead with 3:55 left. The teams were tied 75-75 with 2:58 left and traded baskets to have a 77-77 game with 2:00 to go. After Nevada made three free throws with 1:43 to play, a Mashburn triple tied the game at 80-80 with 1:13 left. Nevada took an 82-80 lead with 30 seconds to go before another Mashburn triple gave UNM the 83-82 lead with 22.4 left. The Lobos got a stop on the final Nevada possession to seal the victory.

• UNM’s four straight road wins is its longest road MW win streak since a five-game conference win streak in 2013-14
• The Lobos have their best 25-game start to a season (20-5) since starting 2013-14 with a 20-5 record
• New Mexico swept the season series from Nevada for the first time since 2015-16, and snapped a six-game losing streak in Reno
• UNM had a double-digit halftime lead for the fourth straight road game
• New Mexico has started the same five (Dent, Mashburn, House, Toppin, Joseph) in every Mountain West game this season

“I am proud of Mash. People have been beating him up, and he beats himself up, after the last game. That’s why I stick with him. He has the ability to make huge shots. Those two threes at the end, to tie and put us up one, were huge shots. Baker played awesome and he got the stop at the end. Great effort by our entire team to get this win.” – Richard Pitino

The Lobos will wrap-up the road trip on Friday with a visit to San Diego State. Game time at Viejas Arena is 8:00 p.m. MT (7:00 p.m. PT) and the game will air on FS1.