Paul Weir and the Lobos will continue getting tested as they host the University of Pennsylvania Quakers for a 2pm matchup on Saturday.
The Quakers are coming in with a five-game winning streak. Penn hasn’t played since Nov. 11, but that last victory was not one that the team could forget about quickly. The Quakers pulled off a 78-75 victory over the then-No. 17/16 Villanova Wildcats, the 2018 NCAA Tournament champions. Head coach Steve Donahue picked up his 100th win at Penn that night.
Penn (9-2) had five players scoring in double figures, with junior AJ Brodeur and senior Antonio Woods leading with 16 points each. This was the fifth straight game that Brodeur reached double digits.
Box score: Villanova vs Penn
It's over! Penn takes down Villanova for the first time since 2002, 78-75 at The Palestra! #Whānau pic.twitter.com/1XebujBsJ2
— Penn Basketball (@PennBasketball) December 12, 2018
New Mexico has only won one of its last five games and currently sits on a 5-5 record. Home advantage hasn’t really been a thing this season as the Lobos are 3-3 when playing at The Pit.
Both teams have four players who are averaging double digits. The Quakers are led by Devon Goodman’s 14.8 points per game, while New Mexico counts on Anthony Mathis’ 15.4 points per game. Mathis scored 20 points on Tuesday’s game against North Texas. He has scored 20 points or more in four different occasions this season.
Penn is averaging 79.7 points per game while limiting opponents to 67.5, giving the Quakers a scoring margin of +12.2. Meanwhile, the Lobos have had a couple of bad blowout games, which has put their scoring margin at -3 (scoring 78.7, allowing 82.5 points).
A slow start has been common for New Mexico this season, including the last game when the Lobos trailed 12-3 by the first media timeout at 13:58. Their first field goal did not come until the 12:53 mark. The Lobos are going to have to start out strong if they want a chance at a victory, as their opponents are 7-0 when leading at halftime.