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Short-handed Hounds win opener

Freedom New Mexico

Clovis freshman Logan Turnbow drew a key charge late, then followed that with a putback to help Eastern New Mexico University’s men open their 2010-11 basketball season with an 81-76 victory over NAIA member Northern New Mexico on Friday night at Greyhound Arena.

Junior guard Versia Hodges shot 12-of-20 from the floor, including 4-of-5 from 3-point range, to finish with 29 points for the Hounds while junior forward Aaron Edwards compiled 16 points and 18 rebounds. Junior guard Stefan Mirabal also had 16 points and freshman guard Michael Maya came off the bench for 14.

ENMU played without seven players who were sitting out one-game suspensions after playing in an unsanctioned league last spring.

For the Eagles (0-2), Clarence Rivas came off the bench to score 18 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the floor. Guard Mario Caetano added 12 points, and forwards Billy Grayson and Steven Eldridge tossed in 11 apiece.

Northern New Mexico opened an 11-3 lead early, and the Hounds didn’t take their first lead until Edwards’ dunk made it 15-14.

Hodges sparked a 7-0 run with a 3-pointer later in the half and ENMU carried a 38-30 margin into halftime.

After Edwards blocked an Eldridge shot and hit a jumper at the other end, the Eagles went on a 15-5 run to tie the score with 15 minutes left. ENMU led 53-47 before Rivas had seven consecutive points in a 13-0 run that put NNMU up 60-53 with 11 minutes left.

Hodges’ 3-pointer sparked an 11-2 surge that gave ENMU the lead back with 7:27 remaining. After three more ties, Mirabal’s 3-pointer put the Hounds in front for good with three minutes to go.

The 6-foot-8 Turnbow drew his charge against Caetano with just under two minutes left, then put back a Maya miss for a five-point lead with 1:35 to go.

ENMU’s next outing is a 7 p.m. tipoff on Wednesday against Western State at Durango, Colo.