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CMU Men's Basketball Hangs On Over CSU-Pueblo

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By KREX News Room


Updated: Mon, 20 Jan 2014 08:26:46 MST

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. – The Colorado Mesa men's basketball team out-scored CSU-Pueblo 15-7 over the final five minutes to defeat the Thunderwolves 79-77 in the Holiday Inn – Airport Thanksgiving Classic Sunday (Dec. 1).

Ryan Stephan started the late game heroics for the Mavericks with a lay-up with 4:39 remaining.

Matt Rosenbaum answered with a jumper for CSUP, but Landon Vermeer countered with a 3-pointer on the ensuing possession.
Wendell Lee drained a 3-pointer for the Thunderwolves with 2:56 remaining. The field goal was the last one in the game for Pueblo.

Vermeer drained his second straight 3-pointer for the Mavericks, and Mike Melillo would add two more on each of the following CMU possessions.

The Mavericks took its first lead of the game since the opening possession when Carlos Perez drained a jumper from the baseline with 24 seconds remaining to give the Mavericks a 78-77 edge.

The 'Wolves missed on a field goal attempt and Mike Melillo made the first of two free throw attempts to extend the CMU lead to 79-77.

Joe Kiely sealed the win for Mesa when he blocked a lay-up by Nate Tigner as time expired. Tigner finished with a game-high 19 points.

CMU got off to a slow start in the contest committing 10 of its 16 turnovers in the first half due in part to the full court press by CSUP. Pueblo capitalized with 27 points off turnovers.

Pueblo led 43-37 at halftime and its lead would grow to a game-high 14 points with just over nine minutes remaining.

Landon Vermeer led Mesa with a game-high 16 points, including a perfect 4-4 from behind the arc.

Mike Melillo tallied his second double-double of the tournament with 15 points and 12 rebounds, including six on the offensive end. He also dished out a game-high five assists.

Joe Kiely and Ryan Stephan each finished in double figures with 14 and 12 points respectively.

Mesa shot 58-percent (30-51) from the floor and 56-percent (9-16) from behind the arc, but shot just 53-percent (10-19) from the free throw line.

Pueblo shot 40-percent (25-62) from the floor, 25-percent (7-28) from deep and 77-percent (20-26) from the line.

Mesa improves to 2-2 overall and will host Chadron State Friday (Dec. 6) in the RMAC opener for both schools.

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