December 12, 2009

A&M comeback falls short in loss to New Mexico

HOUSTON, Texas - New Mexico took its undefeated record into Texas Saturday to face No. 16 Texas A&M at the Toyota Center on a "neutral" court in which the 7,757 in attendance was decisively a pro-Aggie crowd. But New Mexico had the hot hand early and often as it pulled out to as much as an 18-point second half lead.

But the Aggies (8-2) wouldn't go away as A&M chipped away at the Lobo lead on the back of senior guard Donald Sloan's game-high 29 points, a career-high, getting as close as one at 82-81 with 10.1 seconds remaining. But New Mexico (10-0) was able to stave off the comeback and keep its record unblemished with an 84-81 win.

"We made a mistake in not being ready to play at the beginning of the game first of all. We can't just show up and play," Sloan said. "We have to be mentally into it before the game even starts. It's a learning lesson, and maybe it'll help us down the road in conference and the next couple of games we've got coming up."

Sloan has 24 second-half points in leading the Aggie charge, hitting 4-5 from the 3-point arc and 8-10 from the field in the half. Sloan, however, accounted for half of A&M's shots from the perimeter as the Aggies shot just 28.6-percent (8-28) from the 3-point arc.

The Lobos, however, were hot from outside from the opening tip-off. New Mexico hit 58.8-percent (10-17) from the 3-point arc. Senior Roman Martinez continued his hot streak from outside as he hit 4-7 3-point attempts on his way to a team-high 22 points. Martinez is 20-28 from the 3-point line in his last four games.

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