Junior Mike Mitchell hit four free throws in the games final 13 seconds to secure the game for the Aggies, as NMSU began the 2004-05 season with an overtime victory over Western Michigan 65-61 at BP Top of the World Classic Friday night.
Freshman Josh Jenkins led the Aggies with 14 points, including a huge 3-point basket in overtime. The Aggies went 3-for-6 from the field and 1-for-1 from behind the 3-point line in extra period, while hitting 7-of-8 from the charity stripe to seal the game for NMSU.
Jenkins, from Albuquerque, hit four of his five 3-point baskets in the Aggies’ win. Three other Aggies scored in double figures as Trevor Lawrence dropped in 12, Mike Mitchell scored 11 and Byron Davis added 10.
The Aggies shot 43 percent from the field, while holding Western Michigan to just 34 percent shooting.
The Aggies won despite being outrebounded by the Broncos 46-36 and turning the ball over 24 times.
The Broncos were led by Levi Rost with 17 points on the night, going 7-of-15 from the field.
The Aggies and Broncos both started the game with an up and down the court game but neither team could find the bottom of the net until the 17:40 mark in the half when Davis hit a 15-foot jumper from the corner.
Robert Frazier picked up his third foul of the half at the 11:32 mark, forcing him to the bench.
The Aggies held a 27-22 lead at the half. NMSU shot 40 percent from the floor, but hit just 1-of-8 from the 3-point line. The Aggies hit 76.9 percent of their free throws for the half.
The Aggies led by as much as eight in the second half, but couldn’t shake the Broncos. WMU knocked down the long range 3-point basket to tie the game at 51-51 with :26 seconds to go.
NMSU held for the final shot, but an Allen Haynes jumber fell short, sending the game to overtime.
In overtime, tough defense on both ends shined early. NMSU hit a three and seven free throws in the extra period to take the win in their opening game, 65-61.