ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) Elijah Brown scored five of his 18 points at the start of a decisive 14-2 New Mexico run Wednesday night that helped propel the Lobos to a 75-63 win over Nicholls State.
Brown hit a jumper in the lane, then stole the ball before midcourt on the ensuing possession and swished a 3-pointer to kick-start New Mexico (4-1) to a 52-44 lead.
The Colonels (1-3) got 22 points and seven rebounds from Ja'Dante' Frye and 13 points from Johnathan Bell.
Brown had nine rebounds and five assists, while Cullen Neal shook off a 1-for-12 start to finish with 12 points. Tim Williams contributed 12 boards for the Lobos.
The Colonels started strong in building a 27-19 first-half lead on 11-of-18 shooting while making 5 of 10 3-pointers. But as they went cold, New Mexico rallied with a 20-8 run to lead 39-33 before taking a 39-35 advantage into halftime.
The Lobos turned up the defensive pressure after Nicholls State's opening flurry, limiting the Colonels to 10 of 46 from the field, including 4 of 22 from behind the arc.
The game was tied seven times in the seesaw first half.
Nicholls State opened the second half with a 9-4 surge, going up 44-43 after a putback by Kyle Caudill with 16 minutes remaining.
That was when Brown cut loose, igniting New Mexico.
And just at the end of the run, Colonels starting guard T.J. Carpenter picked up his second technical foul while entangled with Xavier Adams and was ejected at the 14:06 mark. He scored 10 points before leaving the game.
The Colonels scored only 17 points after Carpenter's departure, although they did have their opportunities. At one point Nicholls State missed 6 of 10 free throws, including the front end of two one-and-ones.
New Mexico forward Williams came into the game extremely hot, scoring 47 points in two games last week against Loyola-Chicago and USC, but he finished with 10 points on 3-of-8 shooting. .Carpenter came into the game averaging 12.7 points a game, second best on the team. His first technical foul came in the first half when the jostled with Brown.
New Mexico hosts Oral Roberts on Tuesday at 7 p.m.
Nicholls State faces Louisiana College at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday at home.