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Wolf Pack Preview: Nevada Basketball kicks off road trip with Colorado State on Wednesday

NCAA Basketball: Nevada at St. Mary’s Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Nevada (13-8, 6-3) vs. Colorado State (14-8, 5-4)

When: Wednesday, Jan. 28 at 6 p.m. PST

Where: Moby Arena in Fort Collins, Colo.

TV: None

Online: ESPN3/Watch ESPN

Matchup Series: Nevada leads 15-9

Breakdown:

Nevada men’s basketball (13-8, 6-3) begins its two-game road trip with the Colorado State Rams (14-8, 5-4) on Wednesday.

The Wolf Pack are tied with UNLV for second place in the conference at 6-3. The Rams are in a four-way tie for fourth at 5-4.

Nevada defeated Colorado State 67-61 in their first meeting of the season at Lawlor Events Center. Nevada’s Jalen Harris led all scorers with 20 points on 8-of-13 shooting. David Roddy led the Rams with 17 points on 6-of-13 shooting with five rebounds.

After dropping their first three conference games, the Rams have won five out of its last six conference games. They have scored an average of 80.5 points, outscoring opponents by 11.7 points per game in that span.

Colorado State’s only loss in its last six games came in a 77-61 loss versus Utah State, snapping its five-game win streak. Nico Carvacho and Adam Thistlewood led the Rams with 14 points apiece in the losing effort.

The Rams are inexperienced, starting four underclassmen and regularly playing six in the rotation.

Isaiah Stevens, a freshman, leads Colorado State in scoring (13.1 ppg) and assists (4.3 apg). He is shooting 47.8 percent with a 38.5 3-point percentage on the season. Despite his 8-point outing versus Utah State, Stevens is still averaging 16.2 points on 49.5 percent shooting in his last nine games.

Carvacho, the only upperclassman starter, is a force down low for the Rams. The Preseason All-Mountain West honoree is one of two players in the conference to average a double-double, tallying 12.0 points and 10.4 rebounds per game this season. Carvacho is shooting 54.4 percent from the floor.

NCAA Basketball: Colorado State at Air Force
Air Force Falcons forward Ryan Swan (34) defends on a shot from Colorado State Rams center Nico Carvacho (32)
Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

The 6-foot-11 senior has tallied eight double-doubles this season, 43 for his career — one away from tying former Nevada star Jordan Caroline’s Mountain West record of 44 career double-doubles.

Roddy (12.0 ppg) and Thistlewood (10.1 ppg) are the remaining double-digit scorers for the Rams.

Roddy, a freshman, is second on the team in rebounding at 5.7 boards per game. His only starts have come in the last nine games, averaging 16.9 points and 7.6 rebounds per game on 52.9 percent shooting in that span.

Thistlewood is shooting the rock at a 46.2 percent clip, including 42.5 percent from beyond the arc. Nearly 67 percent of Thistewood’s shots are 3-pointers.

The Wolf Pack are coming off a 96-74 victory over the New Mexico Lobos. Nisre Zouzoua set his Nevada career-high with 20 points on 6-of-7 shooting from 3-point range. Nevada hit 17 3-pointers — tying a school-record and setting a Lawlor Events Center record — on 35 attempts.

With the win, Nevada head coach Steve Alford became the 16th active Division-I coach to earn 600 victories, doing so versus his former team.

Nevada is T-4 in the conference in scoring at 75.5 points per game. The Pack are 5th-worst in the conference in field goal percentage at 43.5 percent, but their 38.9 3-point percentage is atop the conference and T-11 nationally.

Harris tops Nevada and is second in the conference with 18.9 points per game. He is averaging a conference-best 22.3 points per game in conference play. Harris has tallied double-digit scoring in 17 consecutive games, reaching 20-plus points in nine of those games.

The 6-foot-5 is tied with Lindsey Drew in both rebounding (6.2 rpg) and steals (1.2 spg). Harris is second in assists with 4.1 per game.

Harris was named the most recent Mountain West Player of the Week award, averaging 23.5 points, 5.0 rebounds and 6.5 assists per game in two games last week.

Jazz Johnson (16.8 ppg) and Drew (11.7 ppg) are the remaining double-digit Pack scorers.

Johnson is shooting 41.4 percent with a 43.1 3-point percentage. He leads the conference in total 3-pointers (69) and 3-pointers made per game (3.3).

Drew is shooting 48.4 percent from the floor and 40.3 percent from deep. He leads the team in assists (4.4 apg) while T-1 in rebounding (6.2 rpg) and steals (1.2 spg).

Projected Lineups:

Nevada:

Colorado State:

Additional Links:

Nevada Game Notes: https://go.aws/2RxeWYv

Colorado State Game Notes: https://go.aws/3aNTR3z

Live Stats: https://bit.ly/2Rz3uvg

Nevada looks to move to 14-8.