As unhappy as fans might have been when Kendall Williams of
the New Mexico Lobos committed his fourth foul with just over nine
in UNM’s Mountain West showdown with the Colorado St. Rams Saturday,
it did not
compare to Williams’ own feelings about it.
"I was real mad," said Williams. "My emotions
were high, but [assistant coach Craig] Neal came over while Coach
doing his thing and calmed me down and says, 'You're going to have
to bring it
home, kid. Don't foul and get the shots that you need.' And that's
Williams scored 18 of a multiple-record
breaking 46 points
in the final seven minutes as No. 16 New Mexico overcame a valiant
the Rams to win 90-82 before a sold out crowd at CSU’s Moby Arena.
In doing so,
UNM not only snapped CSU’s 27-game home winning streak, it also
commanding lead with just two weeks left in the MWC regular
Afterward, UNM coach Steve Alford had nothing
but praise for
his junior guard, pointing out that Williams spent seven minute on
due to foul trouble.
"That's what's really impressive," Alford said.
"He sat about a four-minute stretch there in the second half and
scores and does what he does. It's pretty amazing. But he did a
great job in
that last six minutes not picking up that fifth foul.”
UNM had just taken a 62-61 lead, clawing back
from a 41-38
halftime deficit when Williams picked up his fourth foul on an
reach against the Rams’ Wes Eikmeier, who gave CSU back the lead
with the two
subsequent free throws.
The Rams would take the lead out to 70-64 at
the 6:40 mark
of the second half.
Then Williams took over, hitting a trio of
three pointers as
part of an 11-0 run that gave UNM a 75-70 lead with 3:59 left in
CSU cut the lead to 78-74 on a Colton Iverson
lay up with
1:40 left in the game. But Williams answered with a backdoor dunk
on the next
play and the CSU center missed three of four critical free throws
stretch and the Rams were forced to foul in the final 50 seconds
and UNM hit 8
of 9 free throws to close out the game.
All in all, Williams set a Mountain West
with 10 3-pointers and his 46 points were the most ever scored in
47-year-old arena, topping the record of
44 scored by Portland State's Freeman Williams on Nov. 29,
junior from Rancho Cucomunga, Calif. also set the top scoring mark
players in a road game, scoring the most points by a Lobo since
"The players kept feeding me the ball," said
Williams, who had 15 family members, including his grandmother,
watching in the
stands. "It was really just a team effort, some of the shots I hit
tough. But if the teammates didn't put me in position and the
put me in position, I wouldn't have had quite the night I had."
The Rams blamed themselves for Williams' big
"We had no answer for him," Rams coach Larry
Eustachy said. "... He was completely unstoppable. I want to see
how many of those shots were contested."