The Nevada Wolf Pack were without their star point guard Marqueze Coleman who was out with an ankle injury and were down to only four scholarship players available at the end of the game. But the Wolf Pack somehow was able to secure an 87-80 overtime victory over the Colorado State Rams in Reno on Sunday afternoon.
With the win, the Wolf Pack improves their record to 18-10 and 10-6 in the Mountain West while the Rams record drops to 15-14 and 7-9 in the conference. The win gives Nevada a first round bye in the Mountain West conference tournament which is an amazing accomplishment for a program that only won nine wins last year. Given the turnaround that the Wolf Pack are having this year, Eric Musselman should be the favorite for Coach of the Year in the Mountain West.
The game was closely contested from the start and went to the wire in the final minutes of the game. With ten seconds left in regulation, Wolf Pack guard DJ Fenner was fouled after grabbing the rebound off of his own missed shot. Fenner hits both free throws to put Nevada up 68-67. The Rams were called for an offensive foul with five seconds left and Tyron Criswell went 1 of 2 from the free throw line to give Nevada a 69-67 lead. But Rams guard Joe De Ciman was fouled at mid-court inexplicably by Eric Cooper Jr., with 0.4 seconds left in the game and De Ciman hit both free throws to tie the game and send it into overtime.
In the overtime period, the Wolf Pack outscored the Rams 18-11 and held Colorado State to just two made field goals in the extra period. The Wolf Pack closed out the Rams on their way to securing the victory and the first round bye in the conference tournament. For Nevada, DJ Fenner was the team's leading scorer with 24 points while Tyron Criswell chipped in with 23 points and eight rebounds. Cameron Oliver earned a double-double today by scoring 16 points and grabbing 14 rebounds. Antwann Scott led the Rams in scoring with 30 points while grabbing nine rebounds while Emmanuel Omogbo scored 10 points and grabbed 15 rebounds.
The Wolf Pack will look to continue their successful season on Wednesday as they go on the road to face the Boise State Broncos in Nevada's final road game of the regular season. Tip-off is at 6pm.