Javs beat Hounds in South opener

CNJ staff

KINGSVILLE, Texas — Texas A&M-Kingsville went on an 18-7 run over the final 5 1/2 minutes of the first half and defeated Eastern New Mexico University 74-65 Wednesday night in the Lone Star Conference South Division men’s opener for both teams.

Senior center Stephen Story came off the bench for 15 points to lead five players in double figures for the Javelinas (12-4, 1-0), who snapped a two-game losing streak that knocked them out of the NCAA Division II Top 25. Guards Reggie Love and Adan Montalvo added 14 points each, reserve Chad Nelson chipped in 11 and guard Wendell Mulkey finished with 10 points and game highs of six rebounds and six assists.

ENMU got a strong game from senior guard Justin Redman-Trotter, who had 20 points and five rebounds in 37 minutes. Senior forward Kendall Clark scored 12 points, while guards Marquis Ruffin and Kevin Davis added 10 apiece.

Kingsville committed 22 turnovers, but overcame that with 58 percent (26-of-45) shooting from the field. The Javs went 7-of-12 from 3-point range, led by Love’s 4-of-6.

The Hounds (6-10, 0-1), who had won three of their last four games, led much of the opening half and built a 28-22 lead on Redman-Trotter’s layup with 5:38 left before intermission, the first lead of more than four points for either team.

A basket by Mulkey got Kingsville started. Story’s two free throws put the Javs in front 33-32 and they ended the half with a 40-35 cushion.

McCoy’s basket to open the second half made it a three-point game, but the Javelinas built their first double-digit lead (54-43) on a 3-pointer by Love with just over 16 minutes left. ENMU cut a 13-point deficit to 63-59 on Redman-Trotter’s 3-pointer with 7:39 to go, but Montalvo responded with a trey on Kingsville’s next trip.

The Hounds never got closer than six in the remaining time.