The Nevada Wolf Pack earned the series sweep over the Fresno State Bulldogs Sunday with a 79-65 victory. Nevada has now won eight straight games against its Mountain West foe, dating back to the 2016-17 season.
Fresno State is winless in its four road contests by a combined 74 points. Head coach Justin Hutson has yet to defeat Nevada in five head-to-head matchups — the only Mountain West team he has not beaten.
The Wolf Pack advance to 10-5 with a 5-3 Mountain West record. Fresno State drops to 5-5 with a 3-5 conference record. Nevada’s five conference wins have come by a combined 71 points.
Nevada shot 47.3 percent with a rough 26.3 3-point percentage on the afternoon. Tre Coleman and Desmond Cambridge combined for four of Nevada’s five 3-pointers, hitting two apiece.
Fresno State utilized its full court pressure for a majority of the game, attempting to speed up the Pack and create easy turnovers — but it didn’t prove to be enough.
Grant Sherfield totaled a team-high 27 points — 18 coming in the first half — one point off from tying his career-high. The 6-foot-2 shifty guard netted 8-of-15 of his shots and 10-of-10 from the free throw line. He had a team-high eight assists with a steal. Sherfield has totaled 20-plus points in each of the last six games.
Cambridge followed with his first double-double on the year — totaling 12 points on 4-of-12 shooting with a career-high 11 rebounds.
Fresno State shot 41.9 percent from the floor and 37.5 percent from beyond the arc. It had 18 turnovers, which led to 24 Wolf Pack points-off-turnovers.
Four Bulldog players tallied double figure scoring. Orlando Robinson finished with a team-highs in points (15) and rebounds (8), going 4-for-6 from the floor. Deon Stroud and Isaiah Hill tallied 13 points apiece. Stroud shot 5-of-9 with six rebounds and Hill went 3-of-8 with team-highs in assists (3) and steals (3).
Junior Ballard reached double-digits for the second time this year, totaling 12 points and going 4-for-6 from beyond the arc.
There was a noticeable disparity between the two teams in free throw efficiency. Fresno State had 37 attempts from the charity stripe, but missed 14. Nevada missed just three attempts, going 22-for-25. The Bulldogs had the worst free-throw percentage (.617) in the Mountain West entering Sunday.
After being out-rebounded for the first time all season Friday, Fresno State out-rebounded Nevada 34-32.
Much like it began Friday, both teams began slow. Through the first 4:23 of the contest, Fresno State had as many more turnovers (4) as points (4).
Sherfield tallied Nevada’s first 10 points, hitting four of his first six shots. The first non-Sherfield basket came on a Cambridge 3-pointer with 8:17 left in the opening half, tying the game at 14. It snapped a Wolf Pack scoring drought that lasted five minutes, 16 seconds.
Cambridge’s putback layup gave Nevada the 25-17 lead with 4:38 remaining in the half. The Pack extended it to 31-21 off a wide open second-chance layup from DeAndre Henry.
A 3-pointer from Fresno State’s Junior Ballard in the final seconds cut the lead to 33-26 heading into halftime. Both teams were inefficient from the floor; Nevada shot 34.6 percent and 22.2 percent from deep while Fresno State shot 29.2 percent with a 14.3 3-point percentage.
Back-to-back thunderous slams from Washington gave Nevada the 39-31 lead. Tre Coleman’s corner 3-pointer widened the advantage to 44-31, prompting a Bulldog timeout. Sherfield scored or assisted on nine of the team’s first 11 points in the half.
Sherfield’s three-point play conversion gave Nevada the 53-39 lead with 13:58 remaining — giving him 25 points.
After trailing by 17, back-to-back baskets from Stroud cut the lead to 57-45. Hill’s pull up jumper trimmed it to 63-54 with 7:03 remaining. Nine points was the Pack’s smallest lead in final 18 minutes of the game.
They widened the lead to double-digits with under five minutes remaining and didn’t look back. Cambridge’s 3-pointer gave Nevada the 76-61 with three minutes left. The Pack outscored Fresno State 11-6 in the final 4:46.
Nevada travels to Laramie, Wyo., to face the Wyoming Cowboys in a two-game series beginning on Friday, Jan. 22. Tipoff will be at 5 p.m. PST on the Stadium network.
Fresno State concludes its four-game road trip with a two-game series against the Boise State Broncos. The series will begin Wednesday at 8 p.m. PST on Fox Sports 1.
AND 1!@gsherfield5 drives, draws contact, and finishes!— Nevada Basketball (@NevadaHoops) January 17, 2021
Bonus puts the Pack up, 6-4!#BattleBorn pic.twitter.com/Lqwt6yJi0v
Cambridge with the 3 to pull the Pack back to even!#BattleBorn pic.twitter.com/jis5msDQMm— Nevada Basketball (@NevadaHoops) January 17, 2021
Clean up! @dezcambridgejr cleans up his own miss to put the Pack up 8!#BattleBorn pic.twitter.com/G4kjIrVvyt— Nevada Basketball (@NevadaHoops) January 17, 2021
That is how you make your presence known!!@NevadaHoops | @MountainWest pic.twitter.com/LnsqQ1tqsx— CBS Sports Network (@CBSSportsNet) January 17, 2021
Nothing but net, and @gsherfield5 has his sixth-straight 20-point game!#BattleBorn pic.twitter.com/ZThPSqniUr— Nevada Basketball (@NevadaHoops) January 17, 2021
@gsherfield5 with another And-1, and he has 23!— Nevada Basketball (@NevadaHoops) January 17, 2021
Pack lead up to 14!#BattleBorn pic.twitter.com/dqKXOH9sK5
Round-and-round and IN!— Nevada Basketball (@NevadaHoops) January 17, 2021
Count it for @5warrenw!#BattleBorn pic.twitter.com/5Q4e3Wk8Zt
That movement!@trecoleman13 with the long ball, and he has 11 on the day!— Nevada Basketball (@NevadaHoops) January 17, 2021
Pack lead is now 16!#BattleBorn pic.twitter.com/T1HqFOm6U6
The Pack with the in Lawlor!#BattleBorn pic.twitter.com/BM0maPhYwt— Nevada Basketball (@NevadaHoops) January 17, 2021