Johnson & Wales began their final home game of the season with a pregame ceremony honoring senior Andrew Bonner (Flagstaff, Ariz.).
The game got underway with a back and forth contest as the two sides traded buckets. Each time that the Wildcats would build a small advantage the Eagles would comeback to tie the game. The 'Cats continued to look for a scoring run and started to put together one just under the eight minute mark. A six point run by the Wildcats allowed them to lead 25-19 with 7:24 to play. The Eagles again rallied and cut into the 'Cats lead.
Johnson & Wales took advantage of an offensive stall by Northern New Mexico to push their lead up to 44-32 at the break. JWU shot 54.5% in the first half while holding the Eagles to 44.0%.
In the second half, the 'Cats didn't back down and opened the period with a six point run to lead by 17. The strong start to the second half allowed JWU to build some momentum and maintain their double-digit lead. Northern New Mexico tried to get the stops they needed but the Wildcats kept up their offensive output on their way to the 81-68 victory.
Bonner led all players with 26 points and had a game high 13 rebounds. Jontrell Herman (Duck Hill, Miss.) finished with 22 points and dished out five assists. Malik Woods-Williams had 19 points for Northern New Mexico and Cheik Maiga brought down 10 boards.
The two teams will face eachother next weekend for a pair of games in Espanola, New Mexico to wrap up the regular season.