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Women’s basketball routes UT Permian Basin in season opener

The New Mexico State women’s basketball team breezed past the UT Permian Basin Falcons 70-38 last night to open up the 2018-2019 season in the win column.

The game’s tempo took a while to pick up early on, but after a couple of back-to-back baskets from sophomore Aaliyah Prince, the Aggies were able to pull away from the Falcons. NMSU ended the first quarter on a 16-2 run that put the team ahead 21-5 heading into the second period.

The Aggies again started the quarter slow, allowing the Falcons to start on a 6-0 run. After the slow start, the Aggies regained their composure and pieced a few possessions together to gain a 31-15 advantage midway through the second. The Aggies then tightened up defensively and took a 38-19 lead into the halftime break.

The Aggie defense was relentless in the first half, putting pressure on the Falcon shooters on every possession. NMSU was able to hold UT Permian Basin to just 30 percent from the field in the first half.

The dynamic duo of junior Gia Pack and senior Brooke Salas got the third quarter started with each of them finding the bottom of the net early. With these two finding their rhythm, the Aggies were able to pull away further from the Falcons and lead 46-19 halfway through the third period. Pack and Salas continued to hit their shots as they recorded 19 of the 20 Aggie points in the third quarter.

Aggie junior Gia Pack races down the court during the Aggies season opener against UT Premian Basin inside the Pan American Center, Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018. (Photo courtesy of NMSU athletics)

The lady Aggies took a 58-29 lead into the final period of the game and made sure not to squander it. The Falcons were held to just 2-12 shooting in the final quarter as the Aggie pressure proved too much. The Aggies defeated UT Permian Basin by a final score of 70-38 to open up their season with a dominating victory.

Last year’s WAC Player of the Year, Brooke Salas, picked up right where she left off last season as she led the Aggies in points with 22 and moved up the NMSU all-time scoring list. Salas passed Jeanette Feaster for 13th on the list.

The Aggies now hit the road as they travel to Kalamazoo, Michigan, to go up against Western Michigan on Sunday, Nov. 11, at 11 a.m.

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