Freedom New Mexico
EMPORIA, Kan. — Senior guard Wes Book fell just short of a triple-double with 20 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists Thursday night, helping Emporia State beat Eastern New Mexico University’s men 89-73 in the season opener for both teams.
Emporia State, ranked 23rd in the NCAA Division II preseason poll, erased a six-point deficit by outscoring the Greyhounds 30-12 over the final 11 minutes of the first half. ENMU narrowed the margin under double figures several times in the second half, but never got closer than six points.
Senior guard Marvin Lee added 18 points and senior guard DeAndre Townsend contributed 16 points and eight assists for the Hornets, while sophomore guard Dustin Andrews came off the bench for 13 points.
The Hounds, who had just nine players in uniform due to injuries, were led by 16 points and seven rebounds from senior guard Kevin Davis. Senior forward Kendall Clark added 13 points and six rebounds, while junior forward Travis Cooper netted 12 points off the bench and junior guard Jamaal McCoy finished with 11.
ENMU led 21-15 after junior guard Chad Johnson capped a 9-0 run with a 3-pointer, but the Hornets scored the next eight points to take the lead. A layup by senior Caleb Tegtmeier put Emporia in front for good at 28-26, and the Hornets extended the margin to 45-33 at halftime.
ENMU pulled within six twice early in the second half, and still trailed 77-68 after a layup by Davis with 4:38 to go before Emporia finished the game on a 12-5 run.
The Hornets shot 8-of-16 from 3-point range, led by Book’s 4-of-5, to 3-of-17 for the Hounds. ENMU also struggled at the free throw line, going 2-for-8 in the first half and 12-for-22 overall.
The Hounds face Western New Mexico in a 7 p.m. tipoff on Saturday at Laguna-Acoma High School in the second half of a doubleheader. The first game, at 5 p.m., pits New Mexico Highlands against Grand Canyon.