Andrade leads Cowboys past warrior-like Grizzlies
Heinbaugh records double-double while Amos tallies 21
ALAMOSA, Colo.— New Mexico Highlands University junior Roman Andrade tallied 31 points, nine assists and eight rebounds as he hit five of the Cowboys’ 12 3-pointers to lead his Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference West Division-leading team to a 90-78 win over a warrior-like Adams State College Grizzly men’s basketball squad, Friday night in Plachy Hall.
The Grizzlies, playing with just eight men, had all five starters in double figures and shot a solid 54.5 percent (30-55) from the field as they battled back from a 16-point halftime deficit to within just one point before the deeper Cowboys outlasted their hosts to record their fifth straight win.
Standing eighth in this week’s NCAA Division II Central Regional Rankings, the Cowboys also had all five starters in double figures as they improved to 17-5 overall and to 11-3 in RMAC play, good for a 1-game lead over Fort Lewis, which defeated Colorado State-Pueblo, 69-54 on Friday night in Durango.
The Grizzlies, who play CSU-Pueblo in their final home game of the season, Saturday at 8 p.m., are now 4-18 overall and 1-13 in RMAC play as they suffered their eighth straight setback.
The Cowboys, who play at Fort Lewis in a key divisional battle on Saturday night, were able to claim their first win in Plachy Hall since Feb. 18, 2005.
ASC’s five starters averaged 36 minutes of playing time each and scored all but one of the Grizzlies’ 78 points. Senior Sean Amos (Philadelphia, Pa.), junior Eric Miller (Aurora, Colo.) and sophomore Seth Heinbaugh (Prescott, Ariz.) led the way. Amos, who along with Vitor de Zoppa (Sorocaba, Sao Paulo, Brazil), will be honored before Saturday’s game during Senior Night festivities, had a team-high 21 points. Miller tallied 17 points and was just one carom shy of a second straight double-double as he finished with nine rebounds.
Heinbaugh, who never left the floor, recorded his fourth of the double-double of the year as he racked up 15 points, an impressive 16 rebounds. He also had six assists. De Zoppa led the Grizzlies with seven assists. He also had 14 points and three steals while sophomore Nate Ingbretson (Castle Rock, Colo.) also finished in double figures with 10 points for the Grizzlies.
Although Andrade stole the show, the Cowgirls also received a solid effort from Rashad Peterson, who had 14 points, seven rebounds and seven assists. Lithuanian Mindaugas Markevicus also had 12 points as he hit four treys throughout the night.
Trailing at halftime for the 13th straight game, the Grizzlies came roaring back from the 16-point deficit as a 16-6 run sparked by a 3-point Amos play allowed the Grizzlies to cut the gap to just six with still 14:10 to go.
After giving up a Chris Dunn bucket to fall behind by eight before another 11-4 Grizzly run made it a 62-61 ball game with 10:50.
However, Andrade and Markevicus combined for 3-pointers on each of NMHU’s next three possessions before two Andrade free throws gave the Cowboys a 73-65 lead with 8:53 to go.
The Grizzlies would get only one point closer as Jaime Morgan (Thornton, Colo.) scored ASC’s only bench point before a Markevicus 3-ball and David Omaghan layup after a Andrade offensive rebound put the Cowboys up by a dozen, the same margin as at the final buzzer.
The Cowboys shot at a solid 46.2 percent (12-26) clip from 3-point land and hit 53.8 percent (28-52) of their overall field goals. They also did a good job of holding on to the basketball, committing just 11 turnovers.
The Grizzlies were guilty of 16 but did have a 35-28 advantage on the glass. The Grizzlies were 5-for-13 (38.5 percent) from beyond the arc and outscored their opponents 47-43 in the final 20 minutes.
Related Item: Online Photo Store Gallery