LAS CRUCES, N.M. (Oct. 29) – The New Mexico State men’s basketball team kicked off its 2013-14 campaign with a 97-68 exhibition win Tuesday night versus Western New Mexico inside the Pan American Center.
The Aggies had six players finish with double-digit points. NM State was led by sophomore forward Matej Buovac who finished with a team-high 18 points. Buovac did most of his damage from beyond the 3-point line, going 5-10 from beyond the arc for 15 of his points.
Junior DK Eldridge and senior Kevin Aronis finished with 15 total points each. Like Buovac, Aronis shot 50 percent from beyond the arc, going 4-8 for 12 of his 15 points.
The Bhullar brothers also finished with double-figure points, Tanveer with 12 points and Sim right behind with 10. Senior forward Renaldo Dixon also chipped in another 10 points. Tanveer, seeing his first action as an Aggie, also had 10 rebounds on the night to complete a double-double. He was the only NM State player to finish in double digits in rebounds. The Aggies as a team outrebounded the Mustangs 53-34.
“I think that team is actually one of the better teams that has come here from Western New Mexico,” head coach Marvin Menzies said. “I thought we handled their zone well considering we haven’t practiced against it too much in practice.”
NM State shot over 50 percent from the field during both halves, finishing the game at 52.0 percent. The Aggie defense, meanwhile, held Western New Mexico under 40 percent shooting. The Mustangs finished at 39.2 percent for the game.
Every NM State player, with the exception of guard Daniel Mullings who only played a few minutes, scored in the exhibition.
The Aggies now turn their attention to the beginning of regular season play with a trip to the islands for a tournament hosted by the University of Hawai’i. NM State will have three games in Hawai’i beginning with a game versus Western Michigan on Friday, Nov. 8. The Aggies will also face Tennessee State on Saturday, Nov. 9, and conclude their trip by meeting host Hawai’i on Tuesday, Nov. 12, in a game that will be televised on ESPN 2.