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Nevada starts Mountain West play 1-0 after beating Fresno State 72-57

Perfect start against a stacked conference

Syndication: Reno Gazette Journal JASON BEAN/RGJ / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Mountain West Conference for men’s basketball is going to be TOUGH. Nevada began Mountain West play facing last-place Fresno State and walked out with a 72-57 victory. Strong defense and an improved three-point shot helped Nevada start 1-0 in conference play.

Scoring Summary

1st Half

Nevada 36 - Fresno State 32

2nd Half

Nevada 36 - Fresno State 25

Final: Nevada 72, Fresno State 57

Offense

It was another Jarod Lucas/Kenan Blackshear show. The two combined for 35 points (Blackshear leading the team with 18.) Blackshear also collected seven rebounds and four assists.

The Wolf Pack shot 42.9 percent from the floor, with four total players picking up double digits (Hunter Mclntosh(11) and Tre Coleman (10) alongside Lucas and Blackshear.)

There were big concerns about the three-point shooting on this Nevada team. Thanks to the past couple of games, including the Pack’s 8-19 shooting from beyond the arc against the Bulldogs, those concerns are going out the window.

Lucas shot 3-3 from the three, and players such as Mclntosh and Coleman combined for five three-point shots, keeping the Bulldogs from getting a rally going.

Defense

Nevada’s defense has been a big reason for its 14-1 record. It wreaked havoc on Fresno State, creating 13 turnovers which led to 10 points for Nevada.

Nevada also collected nine steals, four blocks, and collected 32 rebounds. The Pack held the Bulldogs’ shooting to just 43 percent and kept their bench quiet by only allowing six points from the Bulldogs’ bench.

The game got closer than Nevada liked towards the end of the second half, but some missed shots by Fresno State mixed with the three-point shooting for Nevada clicking helped put this one out of reach.

What’s Next

Nevada will go back home to Lawlor to take on Air Force. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. this Tuesday, January 9.