San Jose State tops New Mexico 83-71 for first conference win

Photo credit: @SanJoseStateMBB

By Ana Kieu

The San Jose State men’s basketball team finally picked up their first conference win of the season with a 83-71 victory over the New Mexico Lobos on Saturday at Burns Arena in St. George, Utah.

With the win, SJSU snapped a five-game losing skid and improved to 3-11, 1-9 Mountain West. Jalen Dalcourt, Sebastian Mendoza, Ralph Agee and Trey Smith all finished with 16 points. Omari Moore finished with 14 points.

Spartans head coach Jean Prioleau made two changes to his starting lineup, inserting Trey Smith and Caleb Simmons into the first five. The remaining starters were Omari Moore, Jalen Dalcourt and Ralph Agee.

Omari Moore opened the scoring with a layup for a 2-0 Spartans lead 48 seconds into the first half. It wasn’t long before the Lobos tied the game 2-2 at 18:46 when Valdir Manuel knocked down a jumper. The two teams went back and forth for the rest of the first half. Sebastian Mendoza started a fast break and finished it with a dunk to tie the game 33-33 with 1:27 left in the first half. Just 14 seconds later, UNM went ahead 35-33 on a 2-pointer from Rod Brown.

The Spartans trailed 35-33 at the halftime break. Trey Smith made four of six 3-point attempts for a career-best 12 points at halftime.

The Spartans reignited themselves for the second half. SJSU surged for their largest lead of the game, 59-54, with 8:36 left in the second half. Caleb Simmons made the layup. Just 28 seconds later, Omari Moore added a fast break dunk to make it 61-54 Spartans.

From there on out, SJSU didn’t let UNM affect their game. The Spartans extended their lead to 71-60 with 3-pointers from Sebastian Mendoza and Jalen Dalcourt in a span of 2:52. Jalen Dalcourt wrapped up the Spartans’ scoring with a pair of free throws, while Valdir Manuel concluded the game’s overall scoring with a jumper.

UNM fell to 5-9, 1-9 Mountain West. Valdir Manuel led all scorers with 25 points.

The Spartans take on the Air Force Falcons at the Ability 360 Sports and Fitness Center in Phoenix, Arizona on Thursday, January 28 at 6:30 pm PT.

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