ThunderWolves suffer road loss to No. 11 Mines

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GOLDEN, Colo. The Colorado State University-Pueblo men's basketball team lost 93-56 at Colorado School of Mines Thursday. The Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference contest was the final road game of the season for the ThunderWolves.

The Pack (6-19, 4-15 RMAC) shot 35.5 percent from the field, while the Orediggers (22-3, 19-0 RMAC) produced a scorching 65.4 percent. Mines was also 56.3 percent from long range and 88.9 percent from the free throw line.

The Orediggers won the rebounding battle 36-25, while the Pack totaled 12 offensive boards to the home team's six. CSU-Pueblo gathered 19-second chance points. Both teams had 13 turnovers, but the Orediggers were able to score 18 points off those miscues. The two squads had big production from their benches, as Mines scored 48 off the pine, while the ThunderWolves had 30.

Guard BJ Hardy (R-So., Colorado Springs, Colo.) came off the bench and scored 12 points to lead the team. He shot 5-of-7 (71.4%) from the field and hit two 3-pointers. He also added two assists and two steals.

Center Jason Anderson (R-Jr., Colorado Springs, Colo.) added nine points and a team-high eight rebounds.

The teams traded buckets through the first four minutes of the game, then a 6-0 Pack run gave the ThunderWolves a 12-6 lead with 14:39 showing on the game clock. An Anderson layup, his sixth and seventh points of the game, had the road team ahead 14-9 with just under 14 minutes remaining in the opening half.

The Orediggers then orchestrated an 11-0 run during the next five minutes of clock time to open a 20-14 advantage. A Hardy 3-pointer stopped the bleeding, but just for a moment, as Mines continued to roll and were leading by 12 at 29-17 with 5:40 left in the half.

An old-fashioned 3-point play by junior Donovan Oldham (G/F, Colorado Springs, Colo.) had the ThunderWolves trailing by nine at 29-20 with 5:19 left, but that would be as close as they would get the rest of the half and would be behind by 11, 41-27, at the break. Mines shot a ridiculous 66.7 percent during the opening half, while the Pack hit on 35.7 percent. The Orediggers got 20 of their 41 first half points from the bench.

CSU-Pueblo got within nine on multiple occasions during the first five minutes of the second half and were down 10 at 48-38 with 14:26 remaining in the game. The 10-point deficit would be as close as the Pack would get in the loss.

The ThunderWolves will close the 2018-19 season at home. The final three games starts with Chadron State College and Metro State University of Denver visiting Massari Arena Feb. 22-23. Both games are set to begin at 7:30 p.m.