Aggie Hoops' Road Woes Continue With 83-71 Loss At St. Mary's

MORAGA, CA - The New Mexico State men's basketball team couldn't overcome a nearly 12 minute field goal drought that spanned the late first and early second half as they lost 83-71 to St. Mary's on Tuesday morning at the McKeon Pavilion in Moraga, Calif.

The Aggies trailed by just three, 28-25, after a three pointer from Ian Baker with 6:34 remaining in the first half but failed to record a field goal until the 14:49 of the second half, a layup from Tshilidzi Nephawe. During that span the Aggies fell behind by 19 points before the Nephawe bucket made the score 54-37. The lead would swell to 21 points at 61-39 with 13 minutes remaining. The Aggies would mount a comeback trimming a 19-point deficit down to 12 points with a 7-0 run over the span of 1:20 cutting the lead to 73-61 with 5:19 left to play. The Aggies had a chance to cut the lead to 10 points, however, coming off a steal, Daniel Mullings missed layup and a second-chance putback layup and St. Mary's took the rebound and scored a layup to put the Gaels back up by 14.

With 2:15 left to play the Aggies made their final push cutting the Gaels' lead to eight at 75-67 with 1:18 left to play. The Aggies would force a Saint Mary's turnover but Daniel Mullings would turn the ball over on the ensuing possession virtually ending the Aggies' comeback hopes. SMC would close out the game at the free throw line for the 83-71 victory.

The Aggies were hampered by first half foul trouble that kept senior guard Daniel Mullings on the bench for the final 11:32 of the first half with the Aggies trailing by just one point, 17-16. Mullings picked up his first foul less than a minute into play. With Mullings sitting on the bench, the Aggies' offense struggled while Saint Mary's figured out the Aggies' press scoring several easy baskets as they build a 44-31 halftime lead.

The Aggies shot just 36 percent from the field (18-of-50) while Saint Mary's finished the game shooting 54.2 percent (26-of-48) including 6-of-11 from behind the three point arc.

The Aggies also left plenty of point at the charity stripe hitting 32-of-47 attempts (68 percent) while Saint Mary's converted 25-of-31 from the free throw line.

Daniel Mullings led the Aggies with 18 points while Remi Barry chipped in 17 points. Aaron Bright led all scorers with 21 points while playing all 40 minutes. He finished 10-of-11 from the free throw line.

The Aggies fall to 0-2 on the season and open up the home schedule on Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. MT against Northern Colorado who comes into the Pan American Center at 1-1 following a 78-70 loss at Wyoming this past Sunday.