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December 13, 2009

Men’s Basketball Gets Home Win in Skydome Opener

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Juniors DeAngelo Jones and Cameron Jones each scored 17 points as Northern Arizona snapped a three-game losing streak in a 68-56 victory over UC-Riverside at the Walkup Skydome Sunday afternoon.

NAU (3-5) held the Highlanders to 30 percent shooting in the first half, building a 14-point advantage at halftime. UC Riverside (5-3) never got any closer than 11 points the rest of the game.

“We know when we play with a lot of energy and passion we can be a pretty good defensive team,” said Cameron Jones. “That’s what we worked on this week. We knew we had to play defensive. Coach Hix gave us a good scout and we executed it to the best of our abilities.”

DeAngelo Jones, who started in place of Gabe Rogers, went 8-for-13 from the field with four rebounds. Rogers suffered an ankle sprain in practice on Friday.

“DeAngelo has the ability to drive to the basket and get fouls,” said Cameron Jones. “Our offense is better when he is creating and making plays.”

Cameron Jones had 17 points with seven rebounds and three assists and no turnovers in 28 minutes of action. Senior Nick Larson contributed eight points and a career-best five assists. Julian Olubuyi added nine points for the Lumberjacks.

Northern Arizona held Kyle Austin, UCR's leading scorer entering the game, to just eight points and five shots, while second-leading scorer, Larry Gurganious, took just five shots on the night scoring five points. Rudy Meo led the Highlanders with 16 points off the bench.

Leading 18-16 with 7:52 left in the first half, NAU went on an 18-6 run to end the half. Cameron Jones scored eight of his 12 first half points during the run.

The Lumberjacks shot 50 percent from the field for the game while committing just nine turnovers.

NAU travels to New Mexico for a matchup with the undefeated Lobos in The Pit Wednesday night. The Lobos (10-0) defeated nationally-ranked Texas A&M 84-81 on Saturday in Houston.