ALAMOSA, Colo. (December 3, 2016) - The Colorado State University-Pueblo men's basketball team has had troubles closing games this season, but Saturday the ThunderWolves were able to hold on for an 80-75 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference road victory at Adams State University.
The Pack (3-4, 1-1 RMAC) closed the game by getting to the basket and playing tough defense on the Grizzlies (4-4, 1-1 RMAC). With the game tied 72-72 and the clock reading 2:36, the CSU-Pueblo guards took over, as junior Will Newman (Hawthorne, Calif.) scored six points down the stretch, which included a jumper that put the Pack ahead 74-72 . Senior Rico Spikes (Merriville, Ind.) posted the other bucket in the ThunderWolves' 8-3 run in the final two and half minutes.
Junior Mark Williams (Chico Hills, Calif.) earned his first start and posted 19 points, a team-high eight rebounds and added three blocks with two assists. Senior center Nelson Kahler (Noosa Heads, Australia) went 8-for-10 (80%) from the field to record 19 points. He added four rebounds.
Newman totaled 12 points and a team-high four assists, while Spikes posted 11 points, seven rebounds and two assists.
The ThunderWolves have shot above 50 percent in each of the seven contests this season and Saturday was no different with a 53.3 percentage from the field. The team entered the weekend ranked 17th nationally in field goal percentage. CSU-Pueblo held ASU to 44.6 percent from the field. The Pack won the rebounding battle by a slim 37-36 margin and totaled 15 assists to the Grizzlies' nine. The ThunderWolves dominated the paint with 48 points to Adam State's 36.
The contest saw six lead changes and five ties, as the Pack built a lead as large as 13 in the first half before settling on a 40-31 lead at the half.
A three-point play by Williams with 16:21 left in the secon handed the ThunderWolves a 52-40 lead, but the home team would chip away and with 8:08 remaining the game was tied 64-64.
The Grizzlies took their first lead since early in the game at 5:19 when a free throw gave ASU the 70-69 lead. The ThunderWolves were able to post the next three points before the Grizzlies tied the game at 72 to set-up the final act of the contest.
CSU-Puelo remains on the road Dec. 6 for an RMAC test against New Mexico Highlands beginning at 7 p.m.
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As a member of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, Colorado State University – Pueblo competes in 22 varsity sports in NCAA Division II intercollegiate athletics.