Fast Start Helps Highlands Hold Off Eagles

Kaleb Center/CSC Sports Information

New Mexico Highlands made five of its first seven field goal shots while jumping out to an 11-3 lead and was ahead the rest of the way Friday night while holding off Chadron State in a Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference men’s basketball game in Las Vegas.  The final score was 85-74.

The game was well played in many ways. The teams combined to make 24 of 52 shots from 3-point range, including Chadron State’s 13 of 27 showing, and there were only 23 turnovers.

Highlands is now 11-11 overall and 6-10 in the RMAC and the Eagles are 9-14 and 5-10. 

The Cowboys led 30-16 with eight minutes to play in the first half. The Eagles sank five 3-pointers in the next six minutes to cut the difference to 39-37, but Highlands scored the final five points of the half and led 44-37 at intermission.

The Cowboys were hot again early in the second half while building their biggest lead–58-41– with 13 minutes remaining.  Chadron State again fought back and trailed by just five points—62-57—with eight minutes left.

The Eagles eventually cut the deficit to 72-69 on a layup by center Porter Anderson with 3:05 still showing, but Highlands posted the next nine points and closed out the game by making six consecutive free throws in the last 46 seconds.

Three seniors led the way for Highlands.  Sammy Barnes-Thompkins poured in 30 points while making 12 of 23 field goal shots, Desmond Carpenter scored 17 and grabbed eight rebounds and Andre Adams added 12 points and claimed 13 boards.  The 6-9 Adams also blocked three shots.

The Eagles put four players in double figures. Teddy Parham, who was five-of-eight from 3-point range, scored 17, CJ Jennings 16, Marcus Jefferson 11 and Mason Hiemstra 10.  Jefferson was CSC’s leading rebounder with eight.

Both teams took 64 shots from the field. Highlands made 33 for 51.6% and Chadron 25 for 39.1%.  The Eagles were 11 of 12 at the free throw line. The Cowboys were eight of 12.

The Eagles will play at Colorado-Colorado Springs on Saturday night.  The Mountain Lions ripped Black Hills State 92-63 on Friday night.

                Chadron State—Teddy Parham 17, CJ Jennings 16, Marcus Jefferson 11, Mason Hiemstra 10, Porter Anderson 9, Taj Toney 5, Beau Bragg 4, KJ Harris 2.  Totals: 25-64 (13-27) 11-12 74 points, 32 rebounds, 13 assists, 13 turnovers
                New Mexico Highlands—Sammy Barnes-Thompkins 30, Desmond Carpenter 17, Andre Adams 12, Marcus Brown 8, Mario Archuleta 8, Eric Sonnerberg 7, Tyler Rodgers 3. Totals: 33-64 (11-25) 8-12 85 points, 35 rebounds, 14 assists, 10 turnovers.

Chadron State          37           37          —-74
                N.M. Highlands        44           41          —-85

                3-pointers: CSC—Parham 5, Jennings 3, Jefferson 3, Hiemstra 2.  NMHU—Barmes-Thompkins 3, Carpenter 3, Archuleta 2, Brown 1, Sonnenberg 1, Rodgers 1.     

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