“It was a tough matchup for all of us. We just grinded it out and worked extra hard to make sure they didn’t get to the free-throw line. We came out slow and weren’t running like we usually do, but we got the kinks out, started running and played our game.” – Jordan Johnson.
STOCKTON, Calif. (UNLVRebels.com) – Senior guard Jordan Johnson scored a game-high 22 points and freshman forward Brandon McCoy added 21, as the UNLV men’s basketball team (9-2) defeated Pacific, 81-76, at the Alex G. Spanos Center Saturday night.
It was UNLV’s first true road win of the year in just its second try and was the third straight overall victory for the Runnin’ Rebels.
McCoy pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds, giving him eight double-doubles on the year. Junior forward Shakur Juiston also scored in double figures with 13 points, while senior guard Jovan Mooring contributed 12.
The Tigers (5-7) were led by Roberto Gallinat’s 20 points. Kendall Small scored 18, while Namdi Okonkwo added 11.
TURNING POINT: With a one-point lead at 18-17 and just under 12 minutes to play in the first half, UNLV went on a 13-0 run over the next four minutes to take a 31-17 lead. The Runnin’ Rebels led 45-31 at halftime.
Pacific cut UNLV’s lead to eight (65-57) with seven minutes left in the game, but never seriously threatened the rest of the way.
RUNNIN’ REBEL OF THE GAME: Johnson’s 22 points were two shy of his season high. Although he committed five turnovers, he was 6 of 10 from the field, including 4 of 6 on 3-pointers. He made all six of his free-throw attempts and also had seven rebounds.
QUOTABLE: “It’s encouraging to get a win when things aren’t going well. I’m glad that the guys played so well in the first half, the first 24 or 25 minutes, and gave us enough of a cushion so we could kind of orchestrate the end of the game. We didn’t want to have 19 turnovers doing it, and didn’t want to give up 13 offensive rebounds. Those are statistics we have the opportunity to clean up going forward without taking a loss. So now we will focus in on improving those things.” – UNLV head coach Marvin Menzies.
STAT OF THE GAME: UNLV shot 57.7 percent from the field in the first half (15 of 26).
– UNLV has now made at least one 3-pointer in 1,017 straight games.
– UNLV made 51.0 percent of its shots from the field for the game (25 of 49), marking the ninth time this season it shot 50 percent or better.
– UNLV out-rebounded Pacific 38-31 for the game.
– UNLV’s largest lead of the game was 19, early in the second half.
– UNLV used the same starting lineup for the 11th straight game.
NEXT FOR THE RUNNIN’ REBELS: UNLV will return home to the Thomas & Mack Center for the first time in 18 days to host Mississippi Valley State on Wednesday, Dec. 20 at 8 p.m.
The game will feature the 2nd Annual Teddy Bear Toss. Fans are encouraged to bring new, stuffed toys, which will be donated to the Firefighters of Southern Nevada Burn Foundation. The first 500 fans to the Thomas & Mack Center with a new, stuffed toy will receive a $5 concession voucher.
Tickets to the game may be purchased at UNLVtickets.com, by calling 702-739-FANS (3267) or by visiting the Thomas & Mack Center Box Office.