UNLV Defeats MSU 82-66

A blistering first-half shooting performance by UNLV did in the Mississippi State men's basketball team Monday night. Playing its final game before the Christmas break, MSU allowed nine first-half 3-point baskets and never recovered, falling 82-66 to UNLV in the championship game of the Continental Tire Las Vegas Classic at Orleans Arena.

Game Stats

The Bulldogs played hard and led in several statistical categories but could not mount a serious comeback in the second half after the monster shooting performance in the opening half by the Runnin' Rebels.

The loss snapped a four-game winning streak for MSU.

"We talked about chipping away in the second half," MSU head coach Rick Ray said. "We can't give a good quality club a head start like that. We just didn't handle any of the adversity that took place in the game. We had some opportunities at the rim and we didn't finish."

MSU (9-3) built an early 10-5 lead on two Dre Applewhite free throws and a Fred Thomas dunk. UNLV (8-4) received for a 13-12 lead and stretched its advantage to 21-14 on an 8-0 run.

By then, UNLV was beginning to heat up in long-range. Deville Smith hit three 3-point baskets as the Rebels hit 9-of-13 from 3-point range in the first half alone. Conversely, MSU did not hit a 3-point basket in the first half.

After a basket by Gavin Ware, UNLV reeled off an 8-0 run for a 29-16 advantage. The Bulldogs went better than five minutes between field goals during the run.

UNLV shot 52 percent from the field in the first half and led 42-24 at the intermission.

The Bulldogs continued to play with heart in the second half, closing within 12 on two different occasions. A couple of dunks highlighted an 8-0 run in the later stages of the half as the lead grew past 20.

For the contest, the Bulldogs hit 28 of 59 shots from the field (47.5 percent), 1 of 11 shots from 3-point range (9.1 percent) and 9 of 12 shots from the foul line (75.0 percent). The Rebels hit 26 of 59 shots from the field (44.1 percent), 11 of 26 shots from 3-point range (42.3 percent) and 19 of 24 shots from the foul line (79.2 percent).

UNLV held a 39-30 rebounding advantage. The Bulldogs had nine assists and 14 turnovers, while the Rebels had 16 assists and 19 turnovers.

Craig Sword led MSU with 18 points, while Colin Borchert added 12 points.

Kevin Olekaibe led UNLV with 17 points. Smith finished with 15 points, while Roscoe Smith added 12 points and Khem Birch added 11 points. Roscoe Smith had the game's lone double-double as he also pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds.

MSU returns to action at 7 p.m. on Jan. 2 against Maryland-Eastern Shore at Humphrey Coliseum. That contest will close the non-conference portion of the 2013-14 schedule.

GenesPage.com Recommended Stories


  • Peyton Manning emerged alone atop yet another category in the NFL record book tonight vs the Niners, as he tossed touchdown #509 under the national spotlight of Sunday Night Football (NBC). (Photo…

  • Former USC and NFL running back LenDale White added tons of drama to what was a relatively quiet Homecoming weekend for the Trojans.

  • Here’s a way to watch football and improve your golf swing at the same time. In your living room (or on the range), practice the one-minute golf swing, as shown in this video. Set the timer on your…

  • Dr. Roto, like many others, can't believe Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson (pictured above) passed for over 300 yards and rushed for over 100 yards in the same game. First time that's ever happened…

  • As soon as those winds fall off, get into the stand! I always tell people you can't kill them if you aren't out, but if you want to try and pick an opportune time – this is it.

Up Next


Mississippi State held its own against a massive, physical front line from South Florida. Leading…

Tweets