Feb. 17, 2007
It wasn't pretty and it wasn't easy, but junior Dionne Marsh helped New Mexico survive a big scare today in a 57-47 victory at Air Force. Marsh scored a game-high 24 points as UNM extended its winning streak to seven games while beating the Falcons for the 21st consecutive time. The Lobos improved to 19-7 overall and 9-4 in the Mountain West Conference. Air Force is 5-19 in all games, 1-12 in the MWC.
UNM won for only the second time in nine tries this season when scoring less than 60 points in a game.
Air Force had no answer for the athletic Marsh. She scored nine of the Lobos' final 14 points over the final six minutes, drawing fouls and hitting several big shots down the stretch. Marsh was 7 of 12 from the floor and made 10 of 14 free throws.
After Air Force cut an eight-point Lobo lead to 50-47, Marsh answered with a basket and two free throws to preserve the win.
The Lobos escaped on an afternoon when senior guards Katie Montgomery and Julie Briody - UNM's leading scorers in conference games - combined for just 15 points. The duo came into the game averaging more than 28 points in MWC play.
Montgomery, who had averaged 21 points in her previous three games, was held to 7, missing all five of her 3-point attempts. Briody only scored eight points, going 1 of 5 from 3-point, but contributed eight rebounds to tie a career-high.
New Mexico got a big lift from freshman Eileen Weissman in the second half. After the Falcons tied the score at 31 on a pair of free throws, the 6-foot freshman from Chicago knocked down her first 3-pointer of the season and the Lobos led the rest of the way. Weissman was 0 for 11 from beyond the arc coming into the game. She finished with 6 points and a career-high 6 rebounds in just 8 minutes of action.
New Mexico led 21-20 at halftime and was lucky to do so considering a dreadful start. The Lobos trailed 11-4 midway through the first half, missed 12 of their first 14 shots and committed 13 turnovers before intermission. UNM had just four turnovers after halftime.
New Mexico finished the game shooting just 35% (18-51) from the floor, including 14% (2-14) from 3-point. The Lobos had a big rebounding edge at 42-31. They are now 17-1 this season when grabbing more rebounds than their opponent.
Air Force shot 36% (17-47), but only 33% (9-27) after halftime.
The Lobos are off until Sunday, Feb. 25, when they play host to TCU in a key Mountain West Conference game. Tip-off for Senior Day is 3 p.m. and the game will be televised nationally on CSTV, which is Channel 274 on Comcast cable in Albuquerque.