Dec. 12, 2006
Reno, NV - Marcelus Kemp scored a game-high 20 points to lead the No. 21 ranked Nevada Wolf Pack to a 76-58 victory over Saint Mary's in front of crowd of 6,954 from the Lawlor Events Center.
Saint Mary's (6-5) made 19-of-58 shots to shoot 32.8 percent from the floor en route to a season-low 58 points on Tuesday night. The Gaels once against struggled to make shots from behind the arc on the road, making 4-of-18 shots from long range, shooting 22.2 percent from 3-point land.
Diamon Simpson paced the Gaels with 18 points on 6-of-15 shooting overall while pulling down eight rebounds with six coming on the offensive end of the floor. Brett Collins was the only other Gael to score in double figures, as he scored 16 points on 5-of-13 shooting. Collins, who it 3-of-6 threes, had a game-high nine rebounds.
Nevada (8-1) had an efficient shooting night, as the Wolf Pack shot 54.9 percent for the game and 71.4 percent from 3-point land. The 71.4 percent mark is the best against the Gaels this season. After shooting 1-for-11 in the loss to UNLV on Saturday, Kemp connected on 7-of-11 shots against Saint Mary's, while hitting all four shots he took from behind the arc. Nick Fazekas, who went over the 2,000-point mark in his career, added 19 points and the top rebounder in the country (14.1 rpg coming into the game) had five rebounds.
With the score tied 7-7, Nevada used an 8-0 run to take a 15-7 lead at the 13:03 mark, and lead the Pack would never relinquish. After the Gaels got as close as 18-14, Nevada opened a 10-point lead with baskets on three straight possessions. The Nevada first half lead reached as many as 14 when Fazekas hit a turnaround jumper to make the score 30-16 with 3:43 remaining in the half. A Collins 3-point with one second left on the first half clock the halftime deficit to 30-23.
Nevada came out of the locker room and answered Collins' three with a 3-pointer by Denis Ikovlev to extend the advantage back to double digits. The three by Ikovlev sparked a 16-3 run to open the half and give Nevada a 46-26 lead with 14:51 left to play. SMC would get as close as 13 points (57-44) following a Simpson basket with 7:53 remaining. After the Simpson bucket, Nevada went on 15-4 run to extend the lead to 24 points with 2:28 left on the clock.
Ikovlev finished the game with 10 points and matched Kemp with a team-high eight rebounds. The Wolf Pack out rebounded the Gaels 40-31.
Saint Mary's will return to action on Sunday, Dec. 17 with a road game against the No. 8 ranked Connecticut Huskies. The first ever meeting between SMC and UConn will tip-off at 2 p.m. Eastern Time from the Hartford Civic Center.