Albuquerque, NM – Drew Gordon poured in 27 points and grabbed 45 rout of 11th-ranked UNLV at the Pit on Saturday.
Tony Snell added 12 points for the Lobos (22-4, 8-2 Mountain West), who have solidified their hold of first place in the Mountain West Conference. New Mexico has won seven straight since dropping back-to-back games against league standouts San Diego State and UNLV in mid-January.
"I couldn't be more pleased with our basketball team," said New Mexico head coach Steve Alfrod. "Our guys have been amazing. We still have a lot to do and a lot to prove; this race is far from over with. I don't know if we are the best team in this league yet but there is no team in the last month that has guarded the way that we have guarded."
The Lobos avenged the 75-70 home loss to San Diego State on January 18 with a 77-67 win in California on Wednesday and again had revenge on their minds entering Saturday's contest, as the Runnin' Rebels had claimed an 80-63 win over New Mexico on January 21 in Las Vegas.
Saturday's game was close throughout until Gordon's jumper snapped a 36-36 tie with just under 12 minutes to play. It was all Lobos from there.
Gordon's bucket ignited a run of 12 straight New Mexico points. Snell keyed it with a three-pointer and a dunk before setting up Gordon's layup for a 48-36 advantage.
After Quintrell Thomas made a free throw for UNLV, Gordon scored the next four points to extend the New Mexico cushion to 15 with 7 1/2 minutes remaining.
The Rebels countered with the next five to pull within 10, but Anthony Marshall's layup was the last field goal for the visitors. It came with 6 1/2 minutes to play and the Lobos held the Rebels to just three free throws the rest of the way.
Marshall finished with 18 points and was the only UNLV player to reach double figures. The Runnin' Rebels (22-6, 6-4) have lost two in a row and three of their last four. Each of the three losses have come away from Las Vegas, dropping UNLV to 6-6 in true road games.
"The game seemed eerily similar to the game at Thomas and Mack Center where it is a close game a competitive game and the home team gets some stops and makes some big baskets early in the second half," said UNLV head coach Dave Rice.
Mike Moser, UNLV's leading scorer, made just 3-of-10 shots and scored eight points -- seven below his season average. Chace Stanback, the Runnin' Rebels' second-leading scorer at 13.5 points per game, had just four.
UNLV held the biggest lead of a tight first half after a Stanback three -- his lone basket of the game -- gave the Rebels a 21-13 advantage with just over seven minutes remaining. The Lobos answered with the next 10. Snell's three tied it and A.J. Hardeman followed with a putback layup on the next trip to give New Mexico a 23-21 edge.
The Rebels, though, went into the break with a 27-26 lead.
Gordon, coming off a 17-point, 17-rebound effort against SDSU, posted his second straight double-double and the 26th of his career...UNLV had won three straight over New Mexico and two in a row at the Pit. The Runnin' Rebels still lead the overall series, 28-16...New Mexico is 10-5 against ranked opponents under head coach Steve Alford.