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Lobos Secure No. 2 Seed with Win at Fresno State

by Allison Weiss

FRESNO, Calif.—The Lobos outscored Fresno State 44-19 in the final two quarters for the 72-58 win behind a career-high 33 points from Nyah Wilson to close out the regular season and clinch the No. 2 seed at the Mountain West Tournament.

Wilson went 9-12 from the line, 2-2 from three-point range and 11-19 from the floor, scoring 10 in the third quarter and 11 points in the fourth quarter, and also added a game-high six assists to tie her career high and six rebounds. It was the 10th game that Wilson has scored 20-plus points, the sixth consecutive game in double figures and the 17th time in the last 18 games in double figures.

Aniyah Augmon also finished in double figures with 11 points, scoring double figures for the 17th consecutive game after going 3-7 from the floor, 4-4 from the line and also recording two steals.

UNM shot 50.0% from the floor and 43.8% from three-point range, and came back from a 16-point deficit of 34-18 in the second quarter and an 11-point deficit of 39-28 at the half.

Following Tuesday’s win, the Lobos have now trailed at the half five times in conference and come back to win, with this by the largest margin of outscoring an opponent in the final two quarters in such instances.

A Paula Reus three-pointer opened the third quarter scoring to get the margin down to single digits before the Bulldogs pushed the lead back to 10 at 43-33 less than four minutes into the quarter.

However, a Lara Langermann three-pointer started a 7-0 run that included two Augmon free throws and a Wilson jumper and brought the Lobos back within a possession, with a 4-0 personal Wilson run getting the Lobos within a point at 45-44 with 3:40 remaining in the third. The Lobos pulled even at 46 on a Viané Cumber jumper from the elbow with Reus giving the Lobos their first lead of the game at 48-47 at the 1:21 mark on the next UNM possession. Fresno State reclaimed the lead on a three-pointer on the following possession, but the Lobos closed on a 4-0 run with two Wilson free throws and a Reus layup as time expired to take a 52-50 lead into the fourth quarter.

UNM outscored FS 24-11 in the third with Wilson scoring 10 points and Reus seven, with the Lobos leading just 33 seconds of the quarter. As a team, UNM outshot FS 60.0% to 27.3%, holding the Bulldogs to 3-11 from the floor and 1-6 from behind the arc

A Nahawa Diarra Berthe basket and Wilson three-pointer to start the fourth quarter extended the Lobo lead to seven points with a 9-0 run of a Hulda Joaquim layup, a Wilson layup, a Joaquim steal that led to a Wilson layup and an Augmon three on a Wilson assist later putting UNM ahead by double digits at 67-55.

Fresno State pulled as close as 10 for the remainder of the contest as UNM closed at the free throw line with two from Augmon and three by Wilson for the 14-point final margin.

UNM outscored FS 20-8 in the fourth quarter, holding the Bulldogs to 23.1% shooting and 1-6 from behind the arc, while also shooting 54.5% from the floor and 66.7% from three-point range. Wilson went 3-5 from the floor, 1-1 from three and 4-6 from the line to close with 11 points, while also adding two assists and playing all 10 minutes.

It was also the 12th time this season that the Lobos have held a team below 10 points in a quarter and the second time holding an opponent to below 20 points in the final two quarters.

Additionally, UNM is now 19-1 when scoring 60 or more points and 14-2 when allowing fewer than 60 points.

In the final 20 minutes, UNM shot 57.5% and went 4-7 from three-point range (57.1%), while converting 10-12 free throws.

With the win, the Lobos enter the Mountain West Tournament as the No. 2 seed and close conference with a 12-6 record for the second straight season. It is the sixth time that UNM has been the 2 seed at the MW Tournament and the third time under Coach Mike Bradbury with the last time in 2022.  The Lobos will face the winner of San Diego State- San José State on Monday at 5 p.m. PT.