LAS CRUCES, N.M. (Nov. 15)-The New Mexico State men's basketball team defeated Southeastern Louisiana, 81-56, in the 2012-13 home opener inside the Pan American Center. Senior forward Tyrone Watson directed the Aggies (1-1) with a career-high 24 points.
Watson was 7-of-10 from the field and 10-of-10 at the free-throw line in 24 minutes of action. Freshman center Sim Bhullar was also in double-digits for the first time with 13 points, and he grabbed seven rebounds. The Aggies shot the ball well in the home opener including 51.9 percent from the field (28-of-54), 50 percent from the 3-point line (4-of-8) and 80.8 percent from the free-throw line (21-of26).
The Aggies had a 47-31 halftime lead behind 20 points from Watson. He set a new career high in the first half with 6-of-9 shooting from the field and an 8-of-8 performance at the free-throw line. Off the bench, junior guard Kevin Aronis added eight points on 2-of-3 shooting from the 3-point line. The Aggies ended the first half in an offensive rhythm and hit 8-of-11 shots to outscore the Lions 20-8 to post a 16-point advantage.
In the second half, the Lions narrowed the gap to six, 53-47, with 12:45 to play, but the Aggies answered with the next four points.
The home opener started a span of three games in four days for the Aggies. NM State travels east to meet Bucknell, Saturday, Nov. 17 at 3:30 p.m. and Niagara, Sunday, Nov. 18, at 2 p.m. in the 2K Sports Classic benefiting Wounded Warrior Project in Niagara Falls, N.Y.