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Big Three: Wolf Pack trio pushes Nevada past rival UNLV

12th-ranked Wolf Pack improve to 26-2.

NCAA Basketball: Nevada at San Diego State Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Nevada’s “big three” of Caleb Martin, Jordan Caroline and Cody Martin all contributed in a 89-73 thrashing of its in-state rival UNLV Rebels Wednesday at Lawlor Events Center. The trio combined for 67 points on 24-44 shooting from the field and dominated at the point of attack.

As a result, the Pack improved to 26-2 and are first in the Mountain West with a 13-2 record.

THE RUNDOWN:

  • The Wolf Pack shot a blistering 53 percent from the field and 48 percent from three (13-27). Three players scored in double-figures, as expected, and the Pack totaled 20 assists to just eight turnovers.
  • Splash, Twin Brothers?: Caleb and Cody Martin combined for 10 three-pointers on 17 attempts. Caleb finished with a game-high 24 points on 6-11 from downtown. Cody followed closely behind with a season-high 23 points with a career-high four made threes. Both brothers made it rain from downtown and put the silver state series to bed early in the first half.

Caleb killed a sudden second-half surge from the Rebels with another dagger from behind the arc.

Cody found his rhythm via the catch-and-shoot or off the dribble, surprising from a floor general who leads the Mountain West with 5.4 assists per game.

  • Caroline records his 16th Double-Double: Similar to that of a volcano, Jordan Caroline remained dormant the past few games, but he exploded against the Rebels. Caroline scored a very quiet 20 points on the night and added 12 boards for his 16th double-double this season. Simply put, Caroline is a machine and he puts on a show at Lawlor Events Center.
  • Nevada Breaks Attendance Record: With a season-high 11,289 fans tonight, Nevada set a new total attendance record of 151,926. The Wolf Pack are also averaging a school record of 10,818 fans this season, smashing a previous high of 9,048 last season. Lawlor has been rocking all season and it’s no surprise that fans by the hundreds lined up hours before tip-off to see the Pack beat its rival.
  • Nick Fazekas Jersey Retirement: Nevada retired the No. 22 worn by forward Nick Fazekas in a halftime ceremony. In his four seasons with the Wolf Pack, Fazekas led them to four-straight NCAA Tournament appearances-including Nevada’s first-ever Sweet 16 appearance and is the all-time leading scorer with 2,464 career points. Jazz Johnson will be the last player to wear the No. 22 in school history.

DEFENSE:

Nevada held UNLV to 44 percent shooting from the field and 34 percent from three (9-26). Three players scored in double-figures. Amauri Hardy scored a team-high 19 points. Kris Clyburn added 18 and led a late second half surge that cut the Pack’s lead to 11.

Block Party: Nevada forced 17 turnovers, recorded nine steals on the night and added three blocks. Cody got a piece of one that sent Lawlor to its feet.

FINAL THOUGHTS:

Nevada’s thrashing of UNLV has just about put a stamp on another terrific season for the Pack. The team has been setting records all season and it may only get better heading into tournament play. Despite that, there is still work to be done. Nevada must take the next game against Utah State for sole possession of first place in the Mountain West.

NEXT UP:

Nevada hits the road to face the Utah State Aggies Saturday at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum. Utah State is 23-6 overall and 13-3 in conference play this season.