Article Written by: NEWS-SUN STAFF MEMBER
Photo Taken by: Tony Baker nmtxsports.com
The New Mexico College men's basketball bounced back from last Thursday's tough loss to South Plains College with an 80-75 win over Clarendon College Monday night. NMJC led by two, 39-37, at the break and then outscored Clarendon 41-38 in the second half to earn the victory.
" (We) played way better (tonight)," NMJC coach Brian Lohrey said of his team. " (We) took better shots and guarded and rebounded better. (We) still didnt shoot very well though."
The Thunderbirds shot well enough to win though. NMJC had four players finish with double figur scoring. Nnamdi Okoro had a double-double for the T-Birds, grabbing 11 boards and scoring 11 points, all while coming in off the bench. Roosevelt Smart had a team-high 15 points while Shawn Olden contributed 11 points and had four steals. Damontrez Hawes chipped in 10 for NMJC. Makol Mawien had nine rebounds and seven points while Josiah Riley finished with eight points and seven assists.
Clarendon's Reece Brooks had a game-high 24 points and teammate Marcus Burwell chipped in 21 off the bench.
With the win, NMJC improves to 14-5 on the season and 2-3 in WJCAC play. Surprisingly, the Thunderbirds are a perfect 8-0 when player away from Caster Activity Center this year. NMJC is 5-0 road games and 3-0 when playing on a neutral court.
Lohrey admitted that his team has done way better away from home this season.
"Yes, for whatever reason neutral and road games have been better for this team," Lohrey said. " No idea (why), but yes it probably is a mental thing."
The Thunderbirds will be back in action on Monday when travel to Midland for WJCAC game against the Chaparrals.