Williams sends New Mexico past Houston Baptist 95-79
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) Tim Williams scored a career-high 31 points and had 11 rebounds in New Mexico's 95-79 defeat of Houston Baptist on Monday night.
Williams hit all but one of his 11 shots from the field and went 11-for-12 from the line while collecting his second double-double of the season for New Mexico (2-0). New Mexico outrebounded the Huskies 38-24.
''I thought Tim Williams was terrific,'' New Mexico coach Craig Neal said.
Houston Baptist coach Ron Cottrell agreed.
''We thought that was going to be a matchup issue for us at the four,'' Cottrell said. ''We went to zone pretty quick, realizing that was going to be matchup issue throughout. We tried to cover that up going zone. Early on he had 10 quick points. In our man-to-man, we weren't able to control him. He's a load. He's a heck of a player. Big, physical, really aggressive. I wouldn't want to go against him anymore.''
Jalen Harris added 13 points for the Lobos.
New Mexico never trailed and it was briefly tied at 2. The Lobos gained control with a 14-2 run midway through the first half, building a double-digit lead that it retained for the rest of the game.
Colter Lasher led Houston Baptist with 19 points. Four other Houston Baptist players also reached double figures.
KEY STAT: The Lobos shot 72 percent (18 for 25) in the first half and 50 percent (10 for 20) in the second half.
''I thought our guys came out and played very tentative there at the beginning of the game,'' Cottrell said. ''I don't think we played up to our capability and we really let them take it straight at us. We had a nice discussion at the half about coming out and playing more aggressive and not just rolling over.''
KEY STAT II: The Lobos outscored the Houston Baptist 35-12 from the foul line and three Huskies players fouled out: Josh Ibarra, Braxton Bonds and Cody Stetler.
''We have to play inside out, if we do that we'll get people in foul trouble, we'll be able to get to the line,'' Neal said. ''When we start getting jump-shot happy, we won't be able to get to the line.''
UP NEXT: New Mexico is at home Friday against rival New Mexico State in the first of its two meetings. The Lobos have dominated the series of late, winning five of six games since Neal took the New Mexico helm.