Nevada At MW Leader New Mexico Saturday
Jan. 31, 2013
Nevada at New Mexico: Nevada (11-9, 2-4 MW) plays at Mountain West leading #20/22 New Mexico (18-3, 5-1 MW) on Saturday at 5:05 p.m. PT. The Wolf Pack is in a three-way tie for sixth while the Lobos hold a one-game lead on three teams. Nevada is 2-6 on the road and has dropped five-of-seven games since its season-high five-game win streak. UNM is 10-1 at home and lost for the first time in six MW games at San Diego State on Jan. 26.
Saturday, 5:05 p.m. PT
TELEVISION: NBC Sports Network
NEW MEXICO LOBOS: Sixth-year head coach Steve Alford has the Lobos atop the MW standings with a 5-1 mark and 18-3 overall record. Alford is 144-49 at UNM and 452-232 in 22 years overall. The Lobos are ranked 20th in the AP poll and 22nd in the USA Today Coaches Poll.
Three members of UNM basketball team are averaging double figures led by junior guard Kendall Williams' (6-3) 14 points per game. Williams' 4.5 assists per game is second in the MW. A preseason MW selection, he is averaging 11.4 points per game in conference play.
Tony Snell, a 6-7 guard, is scoring 12 points per night and a team best 14.5 in MW play. Sophomore center Alex Kirk (7-0) scores 11.3 points and grabs a team-high 7.5 rebounds per game.
UNM averages 67.1 points per game and allow 61.2, a margin of plus 5.9. From the field they are shooting 41 percent and opponents 39.6. They are shooting 33.3 percent from behind the arc and opponents 35.4 percent. The Lobos outrebound opponents by 2.6 per game, 35.4-32.8.
After falling behind 11-10 with 13:26 left in the first half, the Runnin' Rebels (17-4, 4-2 Mountain West) used a 9-1 run to go up by seven with 9:10 left before halftime, and UNLV never looked back. The win was UNLV's fourth in five games and its seventh in a row against Nevada.
Anthony Bennett added 13 points and nine rebounds.
The game was the first between the programs as Mountain West members and the Silver State rivals' first as conference foes since 1995-96, when both were members of the Big West.
Jerry Evans Jr. and Deonte Burton scored 14 points apiece for the Wolf Pack (11-9, 2-4), and Evans pulled down nine rebounds.
Nevada is making 74.5 percent of its free throws which is second to Boise State (75.2 %) in the MW and ranks 27th nationally. In the last four games Nevada has made 79.2 (76-of-96) percent of its free throws. At FS the Pack made 30-of-37 free throws which is season highs in both categories.
In the six games he has twice reached double figures in rebounds with 10 vs. #25 Wyoming and a game-high 11 at Fresno State. At Air Force his eight rebounds tied for game-high honors as did seven against #25 San Diego State and nine at UNLV. In the last three MW games he has scored in double figures with 14 vs. #25 SDSU, 12 against Boise State and 14 at UNLV.
BACKCOURT OF 1,200 POINT SCORERS: Nevada's backcourt boasts a pair of 1,200 point scorers in junior point guard Deonte Burton and senior shooting guard Malik Story. Burton scored his 1,000th career point on Nov. 17 against Green Bay and less than 24 hours later Story joined the club, scoring his 1,000th point on Nov. 18 versus Southern Utah. The duo became the 23rd and 24th players in school history to reach the 1,000 point plateau at Nevada. Against Wyoming they both moved past 1,200 career points.
After 87 consecutive games starting in the Nevada backcourt the duo are separated by 15 points. Both moved up one spot in the UNLV game. Burton has 1,283 points to rank 13th in school history while Story's 1,268 is 15th. Burton is 33 back of Luke Babbitt's (2008-10) 1,316 for 12th and Story is three behind Brandon Fields' (2006-10) 1,271 for 14th.
Both have benefitted from the change as Burris is averaging 8.1 points and 4.8 rebounds in his 13 starts. In the first seven games of the season he averaged 6.0 points and 2.9 rebounds. Five times in the 13 starts he has scored in double figures marking the first time he has more than one double figure scoring game in a season.
Burris made his first start this season at Pacific with his previous start coming his freshman year on Dec. 11, 2010 versus San Francisco State. At Pacific he responded with 14 points and a career-high nine rebounds. The 14 points is one off his career high of 15 set his freshman year versus Pepperdine. He scored 13 points versus Cal Poly and followed that with 11 against San Francisco marking his first back-to-back double digit scoring games.
Evans had started 56 consecutive games but was averaging 5.3 points and 3.4 rebounds in the first seven games of the season. His high point total was nine and he was shooting just 35.9 percent. In the seven games off the bench he shot 54.7 percent from the field. In those seven games he averaged 9.6 points per game and grabbed 6.3 rebounds per contest. In his first game off the bench he scored 13 points and grabbed seven rebounds at Pacific. Against Cal Poly he finished with a career-high 14 rebounds. In the Pack's 84-74 victory over Cal State University San Marcos he tied for game-high honors with 18 points which is his season-high and one point off his career-high of 19 set against San Jose State last season. In his six MW starts he is averaging 10.3 points and 8 rebounds per game. In the six games he has twice reached double figures in rebounds with 10 vs. #25 Wyoming and a game-high 11 at Fresno State. At Air Force his eight rebounds tied for game-high honors as did seven against #25 San Diego State and nine at UNLV. In the last three MW games he has scored in double figures with 14 vs. #25 SDSU, 12 against Boise State and 14 at UNLV.
EXPLOSIVE BACKCOURT: Nevada's backcourt duo of Deonte Burton and Malik Story has started all 87 games in their Wolf Pack careers. They are responsible for 46.3 percent of the Pack's offensive production this season. Burton averages 16.5 points per game and Story 15.5. They rank fifth and seventh respectively in the MW in scoring.
After six MW games Burton tops the conference in scoring at 18.2 points per game. He scored 21, 23, 22, 12, 17 and 14 points in the six MW games. Burton scored in double figures in eight consecutive games until finishing with four against Cal Poly. In the eight game stretch he averaged 21.5 points per game. In back-to-back games he scored 28 at Marshall and 26 versus UC Davis. In the last five games of the eight game streak he scored 25 or more points four times including a season-high 29 in the Pack's 76-73 victory at Washington. Seven times he has scored 20 or more points this season.
Story struggled to begin MW play totaling just nine points in the first two games before scoring a game-high 24 at Fresno State, tied for game-high honors with 17 versus #25 San Diego State and totaled 16 in the win over Boise State. At UNLV he totaled nine points making two-of-seven shots. He scored a career-high 35 in the Pack's 85-75 victory over Yale and has scored 20 or more points in five other games. He had a stretch of scoring in double figures in seven consecutive games until totaling seven against San Francisco but followed that with three more double figure outings. At Air Force he totaled just three points which is his lowest point total at Nevada dating back to the second game of his sophomore season against Pacific in the Preseason NIT at UCLA. In 14-of-20 games he has scored in double figures. He had back-to-back 25 point games versus Southern Utah and at Marshall then followed that with 23 at home against UC Davis and 19 in the Drake game. On the season he is making 33.8 percent of his three-pointers to rank fifth in the MW and his 2.3 made per game is fourth in the conference.
In 14-of-20 games this season one of the two has posted or tied for game-high honors in points. Burton has eight game highs to his credit and Story six.
Twice he has scored in double figures in MW play with 12 at Air Force and 11 versus Boise State. His only double figure rebound game of the season also came in conference play when he totaled 11 against #25 Wyoming. He also posted a career-best four blocks at Fresno State.
Elliott started the first eight games of the season but has come off the bench the last 12 games. In 12 games as a reserve he is averaging 6.4 points and 4.8 rebounds per game while shooting 50.8 percent. Four of his six double figure scoring games have come off the bench. Since coming off the bench he has been sharing the five spot with fellow junior forward Kevin Panzer.
Story surpassed 200 career three-pointers made in the Pack's game against Yale and his 216 is second in school history. Marcelus Kemp (2004-08) ranks first with 227 made.
In 87 games Story has attempted 559 shots from behind the arc which is third most at Nevada. Green is second with 592 attempts in his four seasons and 119 games played.
Story has been successful on 38.6 (216-of-559) percent of his three-point attempts which is ninth at Nevada.
Last season Story attempted a Pack single season record 226 three-pointers and made 94 for a percentage of 41.6. The 41.6 percent ranked 24th in NCAA I and his 2.69 made per game was 37th. The 94 three-pointers made a year ago are second most in Pack history behind Jimmy Carroll's (1996-97) 96. As a sophomore he made 76 three-pointers which is the fourth best season in Pack history.
In the Jan. 28, AP poll, New Mexico is ranked 20th and San Diego State is 22nd. UNLV (56) and Colorado State (1) are receiving votes.
Four of nine Mountain West teams are in the top 30 of the Jan. 28 NCAA RPI report. New Mexico leads the pack at No. 7, while UNLV is 17, followed by Colorado State (23) and SDSU (29).
Wyoming (55), Boise State (66), Air Force (71), Nevada (138) and Fresno State (167) round out the conference.