ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Anthony Mathis hit all four of his 3-pointers in the second half to spark New Mexico to an 84-78, comeback victory over UTEP on Saturday.
Mathis finished with 18 points, 16 in the second half, Makuach Maluach scored 13, and Vance Jackson came off the bench to add 12, nine in the second half, for the Lobos (3-1).
Evan Gilyard scored 22 for UTEP (2-3) and Paul Thomas added 16 before fouling out with 7:47 left.
After missing their first eight shots, not scoring until the 12:23 mark and starting out 1-for-13, the Lobos fell behind 14-3 early. New Mexico would not get its first lead until Mathis hit consecutive 3-pointers within 19 seconds of each other midway through the second half to go up 55-53.
Although the Lobos never relinquished the lead, it was tied twice over the ensuing minutes before New Mexico went on an 8-1 run capped by another Mathis 3-pointer at the 6:29 mark.
New Mexico won’t return home again until Dec. 11, with games upcoming at downstate rival New Mexico State, which won the teams’ earlier meeting, and a neutral game against Saint Mary’s in the Basketball Hall of Fame Classic in Los Angeles.
Although the Miners have two wins on the season, both have come against D-II schools; Texas-Permian Basin and Eastern New Mexico. Against their first two D-I opponents, the Miners lost by a combined 60 points.
New Mexico plays at Bradley on Dec. 1 as part of the Mountain West/Missouri Valley Challenge.
UTEP next has a return engagement at home with local rival New Mexico State on Nov. 28. The Aggies won the season’s first meeting 96-69 in Las Cruces, New Mexico.