The Nevada men’s basketball team picked up a 62-48 victory over North Dakota State in a grind-it-out battle in the Golden Window Classic on Wednesday. It is the fewest points Nevada has allowed since it allowed 44 versus San Jose State in the 2012 WAC Tournament.
The Wolf Pack shot 38.3 percent from the floor and 47.1 percent from beyond the arc. The team struggled from inside-the-arc, netting 15 of its 43 two-pointers (34.9 percent) and made just 5-of-16 (31.3 percent) layups or dunks from around the rim.
Fortunately enough for the Wolf Pack, its defense a promising job stifling the Bison offense. They held NDSU to 29.1 percent shooting, 28.6 percent from 3-point range and 8-of-27 (29.6 percent) inside the paint. It had eight steals, four blocks and 17 points off of 16 Bison turnovers.
Nevada’s two top scorers made their Wolf Pack debuts Wednesday. Wichita State transfer Grant Sherfield posted a team-high 14 points on 5-of-14 shooting with four assists. True freshman Tre Coleman was second with 13 points on a perfect 5-of-5 shooting and 3-of-3 from deep, adding three steals and a block.
K.J. Hymes added 11 points with four rebounds. Desmond Cambridge totaled eight points on 2-of-5 shooting from deep in just 19 minutes due to foul trouble. Robby Robinson pulled down a team-high ten rebounds.
The Bison had just one double-digit scorer: Tyree Eady. He had 11 points on 4-of-10 shooting, including 3-of-5 from beyond the arc.
The Wolf Pack did not trail the entire game, possessing the lead for 98.5 percent (39:24) of the game. Their largest lead expanded to 14 points with seven seconds left in the contest.
Back-to-back 3-pointers by Cambridge gave Nevada a 15-7 advantage with 11:27 remaining. Coleman’s added his own 3-pointer — his first career basket — awarding the Pack with a 27-15 lead with 1:37 to go in the first half. Nevada marched into halftime with a 29-20 lead
NDSU began the final half on a 7-0 run, cutting it to 29-27. NDSU failed to tie it up. Hymes’ 3-pointer, followed by a steal-and-score from Coleman extended Nevada’s advantage to 41-33 with 13:31 to go.
The Bison trimmed Nevada’s lead to three midway through the second half, but that was as far as it would go.
Nevada will take on the Nebraska Cornhuskers tomorrow at 11 a.m. PST on the Big Ten Network in its final game of the Golden Window Classic. Nebraska trounced McNeese State 102-55 in its season-opener Wednesday.
North Dakota State will also take on the Cornhuskers, but on Saturday at 11 a.m. PST on the Big Ten Network.