Local sports events
WNMU men's basketball will take the floor Tuesday night putting their 3-1 record on the line against Northern New Mexico College. The Eagles enter the game sporting a 5-8 record while Western comes off a key road win against Texas A&M International bouncing back after their only loss of the season, at home against NM Highlands.
The Mustangs are paced by senior Willie McCray's 16 points a game followed by senior Jon Reese Woodson's 13 points a game. Woodson also lead WNMU with 5.5 rebounds per game.
As a team, the 'Stangs are hitting over 46% from the floor which includes hitting 55% in their win at TAMI last week. The hot shooting for the Mustangs has, according to Coach Matt Enriquez, masked some deficiencies in other areas, such as 14 turnovers a game versus only 11 assists per game.
Coach Enriquez has implemented a new offense and emphasized an uptempo game that starts with high intensity defense. The result has been a lot more fast break points and steals but the team is still learning the offense resulting in too many turnovers. Enriquez believes the turnovers will decline as the team gets more time together on the floor.
Despite a strong start for the Lady Mustangs, they opened up conference play falling to the Pioneers of Texas Woman's 75-69.
Tough defense by the Lady Mustangs, and efficient shooting gave them a 13-9 lead with just over three minutes remaining in the first quarter. Destiney Johnson (El Paso, Texas/Parkland High School) stepped up with four points, one block and one steal. Paulina Rodriguez (Chihuahua, Mexico/Montverde Academy ) added another steal to give Western the 15-6 advantage at the end of the first. Western hit 7-11 from the field, blocked four shots and grabbed three steals going into the second quarter.
Women's basketball looks to start conference play on a high note, traveling to Denton, Texas to take on the Pioneers of Texas Woman's. After a tough 0-2 weekend at the Colorado Mesa Thanksgiving Classic, the Lady Mustangs have a quick turn-around, this time starting fresh in conference play.
The Pioneers of Texas Woman are 2-3 on the season, after an 83-48 win over Huston Tillotson last week. Freshman, Macy Wilkerson led the way with 17 points, while senior Alexus Dukes added 15 points. Texas Woman's finished last season with an 8-12 record, finishing 8th in the conference standings. They were picked to finish 7th in the preseason poll.
WNMU men's basketball experienced their first true road game of the young season visiting Texas A&M International last night. The game featured 9 lead changes and 5 ties, most of them in the first half, but the Mustangs came out on top thanks to shooting better than 50% from the field.
Willie McCray's milestone night, he surpassed 1,000 points for his career, paced WNMU with 21 points on 7-14 shooting. Three other Stangs scored in double figures; Jon Reese Woodson added added 15 points while C.J. Van Beekum and Eddie Giron chipped in 11 a piece.
The teams battled in the first half exchanging the lead 9 times and finding themselves tied 5 times. WNMU jumped out to an early lead on a Woodson layup. TAMI would answer and the race battle was on.The Mustangs found themselves down 18-13 with just under 8:00 remaining in the first half. Strong defense and hot shooting would help them surge ahead, outscoring TAMI 16-7 to take a 29-25 lead into intermission.
For the second time in less than a week, intrastate rivals WNMU & NMHU met on the basketball court, this time in Silver City. While the Mustangs led for most of the game, the Cowboys were able to put together a late charge to pull out the victory and avenge their loss on Friday night.
The Mustangs dominated early on the strength of a smothering defense led by Lesten Gordon's 2 blocks and 3 rebounds in the first 7 minutes. Willie McCray dropped 7 points to build a 22-8 lead for WNMU at the midway point of the first half. Highlands would turn up the intensity of their defense to cool the Mustang's shooting and used a half court shot at the buzzer to cut the Stang lead to 36-33 at the intermission.
Western New Mexico, Angelo State, Texas A&M-Commerce, and UT Permian Basin started the season 2-0. Those wins helped the LSC compile an 18-7 overall record in the opening weekend. The Lone Star was 7-5 against the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference and 4-2 against the Heartland Conference.
The Players of the Week are:
WNMU, Eastern New Mexico, West Texas A&M, and Tarleton State all started the season 2-0. Western helped the conference go 9-3 versus RMAC teams while the rest of the conference was a combined 3-6 against the Heartland Conference.
The Players of the Week in the LSC:
WNMU men's basketball hopes to ride the high of winning both games on opening weekend as they host NM Highlands University on Wednesday night on Drag's Court. It will be a rematch of the first game of the season for both teams; a contest Western won 81-75.
Early in that game the teams traded buckets until Senior Leston Gordon hit three straight shots to give WNMU a 26-18 lead just past the midway point of the first half. Western shooters would go cold allowing Highlands to come back, taking a seven point lead into the break, 41-34.
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