Thursday, March 10, 2011

Can the Aggies flip the switch?

I haven't seen NMSU play a game and close a game like they did in a 66-60 win over Nevada to return to the WAC semis for the sixth straight year.

NMSU was more physical than Nevada, outrebounding the Wolf Pack in the second half with 8 offensive rebounds and 28 points in the paint. those are all stats that show me that this team wants to advance when that has been a question mark all year surrounding this team.

Tyrone Watson played 24 minutes despite flu symptons and Gordo Castillo drove to the basket for a critical And-1 late in the game. Nevada had a poor shooting night, but a lot of that was due to the job Hernst Laroche and Christian Kabongo did on Deonte Burton and Gillenwater helping on Olek Czyz.

One concern I had and I don't know if any of you may have noticed this, but there was a play with Kabongo late in the game where he almost lost his head it looked like. Nevada fouled him with 36.3 seconds left to send him to the line with the Aggies up three. It looked like Gillenwater told him he was open for a lay up, but kabongo was fouled first or didn't see him. The two went back and forth and Laroche had to step in and calm Kabongo down. Kabongo went on to miss both free throws, but Watson punched it back for the Aggies to run more clock. It was a small detail. Don't know how much it means. I think CK will be good, but I wish he would just play.


Anonymous said...

Kabongo, a freshman, plays a little out of control at times. Most of the time, it's pretty questionable passing. Watching him play this year, it doesn't surprise me. Let's hope that he matures some.

There's no place in the game for teammates getting in each others' faces.

Anonymous said...

Every time CK gets the ball, I hold my breath. He's like a newborn colt that hasn't found its legs yet. He needs to look down the court to see who's open instead of dribbling, dribbling, dribbling. Maybe that's what Troy reacted to. Even so, there's no excuse for having teammates go after each other. Troy needs to put some of that energy into playing defense and kicking his moseying down the court into high gear. And CK needs to do some focusing.

Anonymous said...

Didn't see the extracurricular jawing on the ESPNU telecast back at BWW's. Hopefully CK's a fiery hot-head who doesn't carry it long because his tempo and 6 boards was huge in light of Troy's 2. Was surprised he was way short then too long on that critical pair. JG, I think your SN piece today shows how NMSU's season-long perseverence spawned a deep bench that other WAC teams can't match - 16 to 1 on bench pts (half were FTs). Glad BJ emerged from the doghouse in January! CK should have converted to make it 18 to 1 and put him in double figures. He'll have to respect Troy.

Anonymous said...

Home-and-neutral court back to back series vs Nevada is a small statement in itself. Both games had Gordo's signature stamped on them in 38 and 32 mins.

If other role players can't step up and outscore a rested, run-n-gun BSU tonite at least Gordo has set the bar for leadership that these guys will follow in a year or two when they become seniors.