ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- New Mexico guard Darington Hobson recorded his fifth double-double of the season and the Lobos (No. 17 ESPN/USA Today, No. 19 AP) beat Texas Tech (No. 24, No. 20) 90-75 on Tuesday night.
Hobson did have plenty of help as five Lobos scored in doubles figures, leading Red Raiders coach Pat Knight to bemoan his team?s defensive effort."When you score 70-some points, that's enough to win," Knight said. "When teams get beat, you've got to look at the defense. You can't give up 90 points and expect to win."Hobson finished with 23 points and 12 rebounds for New Mexico (13-1) while Roman Martinez also had a double-double with 10 points -- all in the second half -- and 11 rebounds.Reserve David Tairu led Texas Tech (10-2) with 18 points.New Mexico, playing for the first time since losing at Oral Roberts last week, held Texas Tech to a season-low 41 percent shooting from the field."That was probably our best defensive effort in a long time," New Mexico coach Steve Alford said. "That's encouraging because we've spent a lot of time on it in the last three days and I thought our defense tonight was really good."The Lobos took the lead for good at 12-11 when A.J. Hardeman scored on a pass from Jamal Fenton at the 12:24 mark in the midst of a 22-6 run that eventually led to 41-29 halftime lead.The Raiders opened the second half with a 7-1 run to trim the deficit, but New Mexico responded with an 11-2 run that made it 53-38 and the Lobos' lead never dropped into single digits again.It was New Mexico's third win over a team that was ranked at some point this season. The others were over Texas A&M and California."Obviously, it's a really big win for our program to beat three ranked teams in the non-league with this basketball team," Alford said.New Mexico's normally accurate 3-point shooting was absent as it was just 4-of-17 from behind the arc.Curtis Dennis had a career-high 14 points for the Lobos, who won the rebounding battle, 46-35, including a 17-13 edge on the offensive glass. They had 12 turnovers to eight for Texas Tech and New Mexico had 10 steals to three for the Red Raiders."With a young team, I really don't understand the things that they're doing because they've never done it before," Alford said.