Home Sports Local Sports NMMI Broncos sweep two to begin season

NMMI Broncos sweep two to begin season

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NMMI shooting guard Kylin Robinson dribbles past a Jego defender Friday at Cahoon Armory. Robinson led the Broncos with 21 points in the game, including three 3-pointers in a minute-and-a-half span to put NMMI on top, 17-10, early in the first half. (Shutternut Photo)

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Broncos take down Tohono in season opener

The New Mexico Military Institute Bronco basketball team started off the season on the right foot, jumping past the Jegos of Tohono O’odham Community College, 81-58.

It was the second game of the 2019 NMMI Classic Basketball Tournament, a round-robin affair on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 1-2, to tip-off the season, with four teams competing. Conference opponent Frank Phillips College survived a late run by Strength ‘N Motion International in the tourney opener, 81-66.

NMMI was down early due to missed shots from the field and trailed 10-4 after the first four minutes of play. But their stingy play on defense kept the Jegos from breaking out to an insurmountable lead. After the initial first-game jitters wore off, the Bronco offense starting clicking, spurred on by a huge block from Institute 7-foot-1 center Osborn Shema. Shema got the bucket on the other end of the floor after an assist from point guard Andrew Cotton, cutting the Jego lead to two, 10-8, with 15 minutes left in the first half.

Shooting guard Kylin Robinson then went on a three-point tear, raining a trio of treys in the next minute and a half to give NMMI a lead they’d never relinquish.

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Good shot selection, great defense and impressive rebounding paved the way to a NMMI lead at halftime, 43-26.

The second half was more of the same with NMMI contesting every Tohono pass, and gobbling up anything left on the glass. Particularly impressive on the boards was small forward John Mapiou. He had 16 rebounds on the night to lead the Broncs, including 10 on offense.

Top scorer for the Institute was Robinson with 21. He went 5-for-8 from behind the arc, but also showed his ability to play inside with a dunk and dribble-drive for four of his six points in the paint.

Cotton topped the team in assists with 11, nine of which he accumulated in the first half alone.

Forwards Furha Cadeaux and Zachary Bates both came close to getting the coveted double-double: Cadeaux scored 10 points and collected eight boards; Bates poured in 14 and pulled down eight.

“I think our defense really established themselves from the very beginning of the game,” said head NMMI coach Sean Schooley. “That’s something we’ve been working on from day one. We were a little jittery at the start, but we settled down and then we got a spark from the rebounding of Mapiou, the defense of Jeremiah (Barr) and the block by Shema. That kind of play is going to keep us in games and give us a puncher’s chance to win, even on nights when we’re not hitting from 25 feet.”

Broncos start 2-0 on the season with a 78-63 win over Strength ‘N Motion

On Saturday the Broncos defeated Strength ‘N Motion International, 78-63 to sweep their two games in the Bronco Classic.

NMMI’s biggest lead in the first half was 16 (31-15) off of a 14-3 run by the Broncos. The leading scorers in the first half were Furaha Cadeaux and Jeremiah Barr with eight points each.

The Broncos extended their lead against Strength ‘N Motion right away in the second half. Strength ‘N Motion made one basket in the first 10 minutes of action in the second half. NMMI went up as much as 29 points (58-29) in the second half.

NMMI had four players reach double digits in the game led by Furaha Cadeaux with 16 points. Jeremiah Barr collected 12 points and Andrew Cotton and Osborn Shema each had 10 points. The Broncos shot .508% in the game and outrebounded Strength ‘N Motion, 42-33. Zachary Bates rebounded seven basketballs for a team-high in rebounds.

Tarren Burrola collected six points and Jonah Chavez gave the Broncos two points, two assists and a rebound during the Bronco Classic.

“Good start to the season,” said head Bronco basketball coach Sean Schooley. “I thought our defense kept us moving in the right direction both games. We can still improve on our defense, but for the most of the weekend, we played great defense. I’m proud of the guys and I think they can be a really special group.”

The Broncos’ next games will be in Midland, Texas in the Midland Classic on Nov. 7-9. NMMI’s next home game will be on Nov. 13 against Planet Athletic Prep in Cahoon Armory Gym at 7 p.m.