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Zamora’s 3-pointer lifts New Mexico State to 75-72 win over WSU in Las Vegas

UPDATED: Sun., Dec. 23, 2018, 10:07 p.m.

New Mexico State's JoJo Zamora made the winning 3-pointer to beat Washington State on Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018, in Las Vegas. (Josh Bachman / Associated Press)
New Mexico State's JoJo Zamora made the winning 3-pointer to beat Washington State on Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018, in Las Vegas. (Josh Bachman / Associated Press)

LAS VEGAS – JoJo Zamora scored 28 points including a 3-pointer with 2.2 seconds remaining to give New Mexico State a 75-72 victory over Washington State in the third-place game of the Las Vegas Classic.

The Cougars (7-5) were down by 16 points with 5:47 left in the first half but rallied after the break to take their first lead, 56-54, on CJ Elleby’s dunk with 8 1/2 minutes remaining.

The lead changed hands seven times after that with WSU leading by as many as four and holding a one-point edge after an Elleby bucket with 2:22 left. He had another basket with 43 seconds left then tied the game with seven seconds remaining with a 3-pointer before Zamora’s winning shot.

Elleby finished with 20 points and WSU got 14 from Carter Skaggs, who made all four of his 3-point shots.

The Aggies (9-4) beat WSU 69-63 in Las Cruces, New Mexico, on Dec. 1.

New Mexico State led throughout the first half behind 21 points from Zamora, who made 5 of 6 3-pointers while the rest of the Aggies were 1 for 13 from distance in the opening 20 minutes.

Zamora hit two 3-pointers and scored eight points in a 10-2 run gave the Aggies their largest lead of the first half at 16, 35-19, with 5:47 left.

Jeff Pollard led the Cougars with nine points in the first half. He had a 3-pointer and a layup in a 10-4 run to end the half that cut the Aggies lead to 41-31.

Washington State hosts Santa Clara on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Spokane Arena. It will be the Cougars’ second game against a WCC opponent this season. San Diego defeated Washington State 82-75 in a first-round game of the Las Vegas Classic.

Santa Clara (7-6) has won four in a row, all at home. The Broncos are coming off a 77-56 win over Idaho and their signature win, the game before, was a 102-92 double-overtime victory over USC.

The Washington State game will be Santa Clara’s fourth matchup with a Pac-12 team. In addition to the win over USC, the Broncos lost to California and Washington.

Drake 110, San Diego 103 (2OT): Nick Norton scored 14 of his career-high 31 points in the second overtime and the Bulldogs (10-2) beat the Toreros (10-4) in the championship game of the Las Vegas Classic.

Norton banked in a 3-pointer to give Drake a 103-100 lead and he made six straight free throws in the final minute.

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