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New Mexico outlasts Wyoming in overtime

Feb 6, 2014 - The Associated Press

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Although New Mexico power forward Cameron Bairstow stands 6-9, he's not exactly a terror on the glass.

But in the four previous games this season that he reached double-digit rebounds, the Lobos have won.

They made it five-for-five with a 66-61 overtime victory over Wyoming as Bairstow had 23 points and 11 rebounds.

His work on the boards set the tone for his teammates as the Lobos (18-4, 9-1 Mountain West) dominated the rebounds 43-22, including an overwhelming 16-4 advantage on the offensive side.

"When you miss a lot of easy shots, you're going to get your own rebounds a lot," New Mexico coach Craig Neal said.

It's not exactly the blueprint he envisioned before the game.

"Coming into the game, I wasn't suspecting that, but it's a good thing that we did," he said.

That helped New Mexico to a 17-2 edge on second-chance points, which proved to be the difference in the game.

Lobos center Alex Kirk grabbed 10 rebounds to go along with his 15 points - 13 in the second half - as the New Mexico frontcourt nearly equaled the entire Cowboys team.

"Their four (Bairstow) is taller than anybody on our team," said Wyoming forward Larry Nance Jr. "And their five (Kirk) is even taller.

It's a battle. We gave it our all and unfortunately we came up short yet again."

New Mexico won the teams' first meeting this season in overtime, as well.

Wyoming (14-8, 5-4), had a chance to win this one in regulation, but Nance, who finished with 10 points, four blocks and three steals, couldn't sink a fadeaway jumper over Kirk with 1 second left.

"That's our go-to play to win the game and I got good enough separation on Kirk," Nance said. "I knew I could beat him on foot. The shot just didn't drop. Maybe an inch shorter and we would have won that game."

Instead, New Mexico won its sixth straight over a Cowboys squad without head coach Larry Shyatt, who was ill, and second-leading scorer Josh Adams, who was suspended.

Cowgirls win at home

A career high 21 points and seven rebounds from sophomore Marquelle Dent led the Cowgirl basketball team to a 79-75 victory over the New Mexico Lobos. The Cowgirls are now 14-6 overall on the season and 5-4 in the Mountain West while the Lobos drop to 8-13 overall and 3-7 in league play.

"When you look at tonight's game and the stat sheet one thing you won't find on there is the two charges Jordan Sibrel took. It was huge and the second one down the stretch could have cut the game down to two points. It's a toughness when someone is coming at you full speed," said head coach Joe Legerski. "We made free throws down the stretch and I told them if you make them early you don't have to worry about them down the stretch. New Mexico was excellent from the free throw line, but in the last five minutes Marquelle, Kaylee, Kaitlyn stepped up and hit free throws."