For anyone not streaming the game on the Mountain West Network, or in attendance, don’t let the final score fool you. At the 16:46 mark of the second half UNLV was only leading the Incarnate Word Cardinals by 6 at 41-35.
It appeared the Runnin’ Rebels were in for a dog fight as their cold shooting was allowing their opponent from the Southland Conference to remain within striking distance.
Fortunately, after only connecting on 2 of 7 from 3-point range in the first half, they would catch fire and hit 7 of 13 from long range in the second half, pulling away to secure a 28 point victory.
On an uncharacteristically quiet night for the Rebels leading scorer, Jalen Poyser, and with forwards Christian Jones and Dwayne Morgan on the bench with injuries, the Rebels received career nights from a number of other players.
Tyrell Green, notched 21 points, Jovan Mooring 17 and freshman forward Troy Baxter finished with 10 points of his own, in 24 minutes. While this is great production to see out Baxter, he was out shined by fellow freshman forward, Cheickna Dembele.
The 6’11” forward from Mali notched 13 points on an efficient 5-8 shooting while playing a career high 20 minutes. Prior to this game here’s the minutes he has logged: DNP, 7, 7, 5, DNP, DNP, DNP, 5, 9. While the DNP’s and light minutes were due to a nagging foot injury, him logging 20 minutes against the Cardinals is a very positive sign for the Rebels that he is at least almost back to 100%.
For Incarnate Word, they were led in scoring by junior guard Jalin Hart, who tallied 18 points.
Another ranked opponent. The Runnin’ Rebels will travel to Portland to take on the #22 ranked Oregon Ducks. Hopefully their hot shooting from the second half against the Cardinals carriers over for a full 40 minutes against the Ducks.