NMSU Men's Basketball Loses 3rd Straight to USC

NMSU Men's Basketball Loses 3rd Straight to USC
Sports

POSTED: Sunday, November 21, 2010 - 11:05pm

UPDATED: Sunday, November 21, 2010 - 11:49pm

The New Mexico State men’s basketball team fell to Southern California, 80-61, in its final game of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Tip-Off. The Aggies moved to 2-3 this season while USC improved to 3-2.

In his first career start, freshman guard Christian Kabongo scored a team-high 14 points along with seven rebounds. Senior guard Gordo Castillo added a season-high 13 points, while freshman center freshman center Tshilidzi Nephawe supplied a career-high 13 points and seven rebounds in NM State’s third consecutive road game. Both Castillo and Nephawe shot 5-for-7 from the field with Castillo making 3-of-4 3-point field goals.

The Aggies trailed USC, 40-28, at halftime. Castillo and Kabongo led NM State with a game-high eight points each. Castillo shot the ball well in the first half and he went 3-for-4 from the field including 2-of-2 from beyond the arc. Nephawe was also 3-of-4 for six points.

With 7:04 remaining in the first half, the Trojans held a 10-point advantage, 24-14. The Aggies responded and scored seven unanswered points to trim the USC lead to three, 24-21, at the 4:27 mark. Castillo started the rally with his first 3-pointer of the game.

Early in the second half, the Aggies pulled within 10 points, 49-39, with 16:06 to play after back-to-back 3-point plays from junior center Hamidu Rahman and Nephawe.

The Aggies conclude their four-game road swing at UTEP, Tuesday, Nov. 23, at 7 p.m.

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