Sports
A&M-Commerce men pull away from Eastern New Mexico in second half to get 85-78 win and stay unbeaten
By Texas A&M University-Commerce
Dec 7, 2017
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Commerce The Texas A&M University-Commerce men's basketball team defeated Eastern New Mexico 85-78 on Thursday to remain perfect on the year. After a back-and-forth first half, the Lion offense came alive as A&M-Commerce led by as many as 15 in the second half.
 
The win brings the Lions to 8-0 on the year and 3-0 in the Lone Star Conference. It is only the fourth time in program history the team has started the season with eight consecutive wins. The Greyhounds fall to 3-6 and 0-3 in conference play.
 
The Lions return to action on Saturday, hosting Western New Mexico. The game will be played at 1 p.m. at the Field House.
 
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

- Willie Rooks led all scorers with 25 points on the day, making three from downtown and making all six of his foul shots. He had two blocks as well.

- Dorian Armstrong had 16 points, five rebounds and two steals.

- Reggie Reid had 13 points, seven assists and seven rebounds. Daquane Willford added 12 points and four assists.

- The Lions assisted on 18 of their 31 field goals. The Lions shot better than 60 percent from the field, shooting 66.7 percent in the second half.

- The only other teams in program history to start their season 8-0 were the teams in 2013-14, 1953-54 and 1947-48.

- There were 15 lead changes in the first half. The Lions never trailed in the second half.
 
HOW IT HAPPENED

The lead exchanged hands multiple times early in the game, seven times in the first seven minutes. The Lions then went on a run, with five different Lions scoring on an 11-0 run. The Lions led 21-11 midway through the half.
 
The Greyhounds then answered, scoring 11 in a row of their own to retake the lead. The lead changed hands multiple times again in the later stages of the half. Rooks scored the final five points of the half for the Lions. He hit a three with a minute remaining to give the Lions a 37-35 lead at halftime, a lead they would not relinquish again. Armstrong led the team with 11 points in the first half while Rooks added nine.
 
Reid had all seven of his assists in the second half as he was a floor general for the Lions. He assisted three consecutive shots, including a fast break layup and a fast break dunk that pushed the Lion lead to seven points in the early stages of the second half. It was part of a 10-2 run.
 
The Lions again pushed their lead to double digits in the middle stages of the second half. Rooks had a three and a layup. The lead was eventually pushed to 15 with just under seven minutes left in the game. The Greyhounds tried to rally, scoring nine points in a row to cut the lead to just six points with under five minutes remaining.
 
The teams traded buckets late, which did not help the ENMU cause. The Lions made enough shots down the stretch to win the game by seven.