Bejarano big with 36, but Colts outlast ‘Cats

Hagerman’s Jakob Bejarano goes baseline against NMMI’s Jesus Luy. Bejarano was able to score from both the inside and outside, and had a big night for the Bobcats with 36 points. Photo courtesy Laura Brown.

NMMI Sports Press

Hagerman senior Jakob Bejarano dropped in 36 points for the visiting Bobcats, including 23 of his team’s 24 points in the first half, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the Colts in the Cahoon Armory gym, with New Mexico Military winning their second-straight game at home, 63-49.

The Institute squad jumped out to an early 14-1 lead – connecting on their first nine shots from the field – taking the first period by a score of 22-6.

The Bobcats turned the tables in the second, however, squashing the Colt lead to just six points by halftime, 30-24, thanks to a seventeen-point tear by Bejarano.

An 11-2 run by the Colts to start the third, capped by a three-pointer by NMMI senior Jesus Luy, made it 43-26 with 4:55 on the clock. The Bobcats battled back to within nine, 43-35, but another Colt run in the final minute and a half of play gave NMMI a 15-point lead, 50-35, heading into the final quarter.

Hagerman closed to back within seven several times before the three-minute mark in the fourth, but the Colts sunk enough free-throws down the stretch to keep the game out of reach, including a 6 for 6 stint from the stripe by sophomore guard Ricardo Mata.

“The team is starting to really play well together,” said head NMMI coach Connor Williamson. “I liked everyone’s effort tonight. We came out strong tonight and got a comfortable lead, but then they had a really good player, Bejarano, score a lot of points in the first half. That made it a close game, but our guys fought hard in the second half to pull it out. We just tried to spread it out and take time off the clock at the end of the game, and knocked down some good free-throws.”

Top scorer for the game was Bobcat Bejarano, with the aforementioned 36. Teammate Jose Rodriguez had 11.

NMMI had three players post double-figures in scoring, led by sophomore Daniel Xibille’s 18; Luy had 14 and senior Hector Reyna dropped in 12.

With the win, NMMI improves to 3-4 on the season, while the Bobcats fall to 6-10. Next up for the Colts will be a road match at Texico at 6:00 PM on Monday, Jan. 29, followed by a rematch with ‘Cats in Hagerman on Thursday, Jan. 31 at 6:30 PM.

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