Hounds earn LSC sweep over UAFS


Last updated 1/11/2022 at 4:41pm

PORTALES — In their Lone Star Conference opener on Dec. 31, Eastern New Mexico University’s men gave up a 15-point, second-half lead in losing at Texas A&M International.

Saturday at Greyhound Arena, they turned the tables, erasing a 15-point Arkansas-Fort Smith lead in the second half to post a 62-59 LSC win over the Lions.

Senior guard James Jordan, who helped seal a 65-62 overtime win over Oklahoma Christian on Thursday with four free throws in the final minute of the OT, gave ENMU (6-6, 2-1 LSC) its first lead since early 60-59 on a layup with 1:24 to go. He then added two charity tosses with five seconds to go, and stole the Lions’ inbounds pass to seal the deal.

Trailing by 13 points, the Hounds outscored UAFS 21-5 over the final seven-plus minutes of the contest.

Freshman guard Kentrell Pullian continued his strong play of late, finishing with a game-high 19 points on 8-of-10 shooting, including 3-of-4 from 3-point range. He also grabbed eight rebounds and dished a team-high three assists.

Junior guard JaQuan Morris went 5-for-8 from the field with a pair of 3-pointers to finish with 13 points for the Hounds. Fort Smith, which lost 57-51 at unbeaten and NCAA Division II top-ranked Lubbock Christian on Thursday night, placed four players scored in double digits, led by junior guard Matthew Wilson and sophomore guard Evan Anderson with 13 points apiece. Meantime, junior forward Chris Rollins had a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds.

ENMU women 75, Arkansas-Fort Smith 59 — Sophomore guard Natalie Stice paced four Greyhounds in double figures with 21 points, including 5-of-8 from 3-point range, and also grabbed a team-leading nine rebounds.

The Lions (2-11, 0-4 LSC) led 5-3 early, but ENMU went on a 10-0 run which started with a basket from Clovis freshman Hanna Nussbaumer, and never looked back. ENMU (5-4, 1-2) built a 15-point lead midway through the second stanza and fended off several runs by UAFS, which never got closer than the 36-30 halftime margin en route to its seventh consecutive setback.

ENMU took its biggest lead with 9-1 surge in the final segment for a 72-54 advantage.

The Hounds shot 47 percent from the field (27-of-57), including 8-of-19 from 3-point range, while limiting the Lions to 39 percent.

Sophomore guard Julia Chavez, making her first collegiate start, added 12 points and six rebounds for the Hounds while senior guard Iyanna McCurdy had 11 points and seven boards and junior forward Kamirah Decker chipped in 10 points. Meantime, Nussbaumer also made her first collegiate start and finished with personal bests of eight points and four rebounds.

ENMU had a 29-8 edge in points off turnovers, forcing the Lions into 20 mechanical errors.

Junior guard Paige Elston led UAFS with 23 points, seven rebounds and six assists.

ENMU squads return to action on Thursday with LSC contests at Texas-Tyler.


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