Lobo basketball hosts Cherry & Silver exhibition

Isabel Gonzalez @cisabelg The University of New Mexico men's basketball team hosted the Cherry & Silver event on Friday for the second year in a

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Seniors Anthony Mathis and Dane Kuiper battle it out during the 2018 Cherry & Silver scrimmage. Scott Forman/ The Lobo Lair

Isabel Gonzalez
@cisabelg

The University of New Mexico men’s basketball team hosted the Cherry & Silver event on Friday for the second year in a row under head coach Paul Weir. The day included a three-point contest, a dunk contest, a scrimmage and some friendly teasing between teammates. The crowd watching included a couple of recruits. 
Two seniors battled it out for the three-point contest. Anthony Mathis represented the silver team while and Dane Kuiper wore the cherry jersey. Mathis came out victorious.
“I love playing against Anthony. We played against each other in sixth grade so it’s always been fun,” Kuiper said. “He’s an amazing shooter. I was a little off tonight but he wasn’t. He got the best of me tonight, but he won’t again.”
When Mathis was made aware of this comment, he pointed out that he and Kuiper were seniors, so in a way, his teammate was right in saying he wouldn’t beat him in a three-point contest again. He then joked some more about his bragging rights.
“I’ve participated in three three-point competitions. I’m 3-0 so he’s not going to hear the end of that,” Mathis said.


After a bit of a warmup, the dunk contest began. Freshman guard Drue Drinnon opened big with a dunk that involved jumping over two people: Kuiper and Lobo fan “Snake.” This earned him a total score of 39 by the four judges. Keith McGee tied with him, while Tavian Percy and Makuach Maluach earned 30 and 36 respectively.
The top three players continued to the second round. McGee got eliminated in this stage with a 37, as his two competitors had perfect 40s. During the final round, Drinnon pulled the second win for the silver team with another perfect score. The official UNM men’s basketball account allowed fans to vote on Twitter, and Drinnon came out as the fan favorite.


Weir was walking around during the event, but he said he got a good look at the dunks a couple days earlier. Players would stay on the court after the official team practice to try to perfect their dunks for the competition.
The night ended with a scrimmage between the cherry and silver teams. The final score was 55-52 in favor of the silver team after Mathis made four straight free throws. Was it a coincidence that the game ended so close? Perhaps not, but it was all for fun.

Dane Kuiper sat out for the rest of the night after taking a fall during the scrimmage. Scott Forman/The Lobo Lair


“Coach wanted toward the end to just tie the score no matter what. It was to get the fans into it and stuff,” Kuiper told the media.
Kuiper didn’t get to finish the scrimmage, as he took a fall and his left shoulder started hurting. After the game, Weir said he couldn’t comment too much about it since he didn’t see it happen. However, Kuiper told the media that it probably wasn’t a big deal and he would be fine.
UNM said there were approximately 6,700 fans at the event. This included a couple of special guests including Representative Michelle Grisham, Fedonta JB White (recruit from Santa Fe taking an unofficial visit) and Terry Armstrong (recruit taking an official visit).
The crowd bursted into chants throughout the night saying “We want Terry.” The four-star recruit had arrived earlier that day with a small crowd waiting for him at the Albuquerque International Sunport.
New Mexico officially opens the 2018 season on Nov. 6 as the Lobos hit the road to take on CSUN.

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