BayRunners storm back, fall to Slam

New Mexico wins, 97-91, after blowing 18-point lead

March 14, 2000|By Gary Herron | Gary Herron,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- The BayRunners erased what had been an 18-point third-quarter lead, and even led for a while in the final period, but couldn't hold on, losing their second game in a row at New Mexico, 97-91, last night.

The Slam, now 4-1 against the BayRunners this season, used a 9-4 run over the game's final 2: 07 to win its third game in a row.

The BayRunners played the second quarter without Rodney Elliott, who got poked in the eye in a scuffle for a loose ball.

The Slam was the beneficiary of 17 points at the free-throw line in the first half, compared with one for the BayRunners -- and that didn't come until the last minute of the half. But Baltimore had six more field goals, keeping the game close.

"We didn't get to the line that often and when we did, we didn't convert," said coach Terry Truax, seeing that his team had been 1-for-8 at the line in the first half.

It didn't stay close for long. The Slam opened the second half with a 17-3 run to take a 68-50 lead.

For the BayRunners, it was a good news, bad news scenario: New Mexico was having trouble making free throws, while Baltimore players found themselves at the line 21 times, making 14.

But New Mexico had 10 field goals to atone for its shortcomings at the line, and the BayRunners made only four field goals in the quarter after 21 in the first half.

Elliott and Mark Blount each had double doubles for Baltimore, Elliott with 17 points and 10 rebounds, and Blount with 10 points and 14 boards. Monty Wilson scored 16 points, Steve Goodrich added 11, and Lonnie Harrell and Shawnta Rogers chipped in with 10 apiece.

Andre Perry notched his 14th double double of the season for New Mexico, with 12 points and 13 rebounds. Jason Sasser led the Slam with 17 points.

"They hurt us inside," Truax said of Perry and Sasser, who had just five rebounds but made all seven of his free throws.

The loss was the BayRunners' 14th in 16 road games. San Diego also has but two road wins; Baltimore plays at last-place San Diego Thursday and Saturday.

BayRunners 25 22 22 22 -- 91

New Mexico 26 25 26 20 -- 97

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