SAN ANTONIO, Texas – The Northern Arizona men's basketball team was able to pull out a solid victory tonight on the road in its season opener at UTSA. The Lumberjacks topped the Roadrunners 74-63 to start the season with a win.
"It was great to get our season opening win on the road against a well coached team like Texas-San Antonio," said head coach Jack Murphy. "We knew it would be a difficult game, and I was proud of how the guys responded. We moved the ball very well. Another testament to our mental toughness was our ability to make free throws. We went 18-of-21 from the line; you'll win a lot of games doing that."
Four Lumberjacks scored in double figures to solidify the team effort that was put forth in tonight's victory. Senior Max Jacobsen and junior transfer Aaseem Dixon both led the way with 17 points apiece. Junior transfer Quinton Upshur registered 15 points, while freshman Kris Yanku added 12 points.
The Lumberjacks started the game on an 8-0 run after a pair of three-pointers mixed with a dunk by Upshur. NAU went on to shoot 36 percent from the floor in the first half, as it took a 25-21 lead into halftime.
Coming out of the locker room, both teams traded points for the majority of the half, but it was a dunk by Upshur that ignited the bench and gave NAU its first double digit lead of the game. The dunk included an 11-0 run by the Lumberjacks that saw NAU go up 60-45 with 6:04 left to play.
NAU led by as many as 19 points in the game when freshman Ako Kaluna recorded a jumper in the paint with under four minutes left to go in the game. UTSA attempted to cut into the Lumberjacks' lead, but NAU proved to be too much for the Roadrunners as the Lumberjacks came away with the win at the Convocation Center.
UTSA shot 42.9 percent from the line for the game. Hyjii Thomas led UTSA with 17 points and six rebounds. Keon Lewis added 15 points to round out the Roadrunners' top scorers.
The Lumberjacks will continue their road stint with a game at Texas Tech on Monday, Nov. 11 at 6 p.m. on Fox Sports Southwest Ch. 676. Live stats can be found at www.texastech.com.