LOS ANGELES — Jordan Ford scored 18 of his 28 points in the first half and Saint Mary’s routed New Mexico 85-60 on Friday in the opening game of the Basketball Hall of Fame Classic tripleheader.
The Gaels (6-4) rolled to big leads at the start of each half in winning their third in a row. Malik Fitts added 15 points. Both Ford and Fitts played with three fouls in the second half at Staples Center.
Keith McGee scored 12 points and Makuach Maluach added 10 points for the Lobos (4-3), who were playing their third road game in six days. They lost both their games this week by a combined 60 points.
Saint Mary’s opened the game with a 22-8 spurt, getting eight points from Ford and six by Fitts. Ford scored the Gaels’ final seven points of the half to put them up 43-29.
It was all Saint Mary’s to start the second half. The Gaels scored 15 straight points behind five by Ford and four from Fitts to extend their lead to 58-29.
Ford’s second 3-pointer pushed the Gaels’ lead to 74-41. They shot 60 percent from the floor in the game
New Mexico: The Lobos had eight assists, one off their season low. … They fell to 1-2 all-time in the series. The teams were meeting for the first time since 2001. … The Lobos have trailed at the break four times in seven games this season and come back to win three times. … They were coming off a 100-65 loss to rival New Mexico State.
Saint Mary’s: The Gaels had a season-high 15 turnovers. … They are 1-2 in neutral-site games this season with one more to play against LSU in Las Vegas on Dec. 15. They lost to Utah State and then-No. 15 Mississippi State in Vegas before Thanksgiving.
New Mexico: Hosts Colorado on Tuesday in the first of four straight home games.
Saint Mary’s: Hosts Cal State Fullerton on Monday.
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