Nevada hosts Portland on Thursday at 7:05 p.m.
Dec. 20, 2011
Portland at NEVADA
Winners of a season-high five in a row, Nevada (8-3) hosts Portland (3-9) on Thursday at 7:05 p.m. PT. After starting the season 0-2 the Wolf Pack has won eight of its last nine games. Portland is 3-9 and has lost its last five games and is 1-9 in the last 10 games.
Thursday, 7:05 p.m. PT
NEVADA WOLF PACK
Lawlor Events Center (11,536)
RADIO: University of Nevada Sports Network (KUUB 94.5 FM Reno; KPLY 630 AM Reno; KELY 1230 AM Ely; KWNA 1400 AM Winnemucca; and KSVL 92.3 FM Yerington)
Don Marchand (play-by-play), Len Stevens (analyst)
Live stats: Livestats Link
WEB STREAMING: NevadaWolfPack.tv
SERIES HISTORY: Portland leads the series 24-19. The Pilots won last year in Portland, Ore. 66-62. Portland is 3-2 in the last five meetings but the two schools has split the last 10 games.
UP NEXT: Nevada hosts Cedarville on Wednesday, Dec. 28 at 7:05 p.m.
ABOUT THE PORTLAND PILOTS - Portland is 3-8 on the season for sixth year head coach Eric Reveno. Reveno is 81-90 as head coach of the Pilots. Portland has lost its last five games and is 1-9 in the last 10 games.
The Pilots have two players averaging double figures led by 6-7 sophomore forward Ryan Nicholas who is scoring 11.6 points per game. Nicholas also tops the team in rebounding grabbing 7.1 per game. He is shooting 51 percent from the field and 72 percent from the free throw line. Sophomore guard Tim Douglas (5-10) is averaging 10.5 points per game and a team-high 3.3 assists per contest. Senior guard Nemanja Mitrovic (6-5) is scoring 9.9 points per game and shoots 33 percent from three-point range making a team-high 22 in 66 attempts.
Offensively the Pilots average 65. 8 points per game and allow 77.1. Portland is shooting 42.1 percent from the field, 31.4 percent from three-point range and 70.6 percent at the free throw line. Opponents are shooting 45.9 from the field, 34.8 percent from behind the arc and 67.6 percent at the free throw line. On the backboards the Pilots are nearly equal with their opponents grabbing 34.5 and allowing 34.7.
Last game: Win Streak at Five After Nevada Beats UC Riverside 71-47
RENO, Nev. (AP) - Malik Story and Olek Czyz scored 15 points each to lead Nevada over UC Riverside 71-47 on Saturday.
Dario Hunt had 12 points and 11 rebounds and Deonte Burton scored 10 as the Wolf Pack (8-3) extended its winning streak to five.
Kareem Nitoto scored 11 points to lead the Highlanders (4-6). Phil Martin, who had scored 25 points in each of his last two games, had nine for UC Riverside, and Robert Smith added eight.
The Wolf Pack jumped to an 11-3 lead and extended the gap to 22-8 after a pair of free throws by Story with 11:47 to play.
Nevada led 35-22 at halftime behind Story's 11 points. The junior guard's three-point play gave Nevada a 35-20 lead with 37 seconds to go in the half.
Nevada improved to 5-1 at home. The Highlanders dropped to 2-5 away from Riverside.
PACK WINNERS OF FIVE IN A RWO AND EIGHT-OF-NINE - Nevada has won a season-high five in a row and eight-of-nine after starting the season 0-2. The only loss in the stretch was 76-55 to BYU in Chicago.
The last time the Wolf Pack won five in a row was during the 2008-09 season when the team put together two five game win streaks. The last team to win six in a row was the 2006-07 squad that started the season 7-0 and also had win streaks of nine and 10 games.
FLIPPING THE RECORDS AROUND IN A YEAR - Nevada’s current 8-3 mark is exactly flipped from the Pack’s record a year ago when the team was 3-8 after 11 games. Last year the Wolf Pack’s eighth victory came on Jan. 27, 2011 when they defeated Fresno State at home 79-76.
In addition to improving the overall record the Pack has also improved the wins away from Reno. Last season Nevada was 3-10 in away games and 1-4 at neutral sites for a combined 4-14 record outside of Lawlor Events Center. Nevada was 0-10 away from Reno until a 69-67 victory at Boise State on Jan 15, 2011.
This year Nevada is 3-2 away from Reno, 2-1 in true road contests and 1-1 in two neutral site games played in Chicago.
PACK GETTING DEFENSIVE - Nevada leads the WAC in scoring defense allowing a conference low 63.5 points per game. The Pack is fourth in field goal percentage defense allowing opponents to shoot just 40.3 percent. Nevada also tops the league in blocked shots averaging 5.18 per game and defensive rebounds grabbing 26.64 per contest.
BYU is the only opponent to shoot over 50 percent versus the Pack as the Cougars connected on 54.4 percent of their opportunities. Nevada has held four opponents below 40 percent shooting with a season low 30 percent coming in the last game versus UC Riverside.
BURTON ON POINT(S) - Sophomore point guard Deonte Burton has scored in double figures in the last four games and the first three were game highs with 31 points versus Washington (12/2), 28 at Arizona State (12/7) and 21 at Montana (12/10). He followed that with 10 in the UC Riverside game.
In the last four games Burton is averaging 22.5 points, 3.8 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 1.3 steals with an assist to turnover ratio of 3.6. From the field he is shooting 50 percent, 57.9 from behind the three-point line and 80.5 percent at the free throw line. In the last three games he has 12 assists and just one turnover.
He had a stretch of making 15 consecutive free throws and has made 28 of his last 31 attempts, 90 percent.
The majority of Burton’s points have come after halftime in the four games when he has scored 66 of his 90 points, 73 percent. After the break he is shooting 67 (18-of-27) percent, 83 (10-of-12) percent from behind the three-point line and 87 (20-of-23) percent at the free throw line.
Against UC Riverside he finished with 10 points making three-of-five field goals, one-of-two, three-pointers and all three free throw attempts. He also had four assists and one blocked shot. Eight of his points came in the second half.
At Montana, Burton made five-of-12 field goals, three-of-six three-pointers and eight-of-nine free throws. He also had five rebounds, five assists, blocked a shot and for the second game in a row did not have a turnover. He scored 15 of his 21 points in the second half.
At ASU he made six-of-11 field goals, three-of-five, three-pointers and 13-of-15 free throws. The 13 free throws made and 15 attempted are career highs. He scored 21 of his 28 points in the second half.
In the Washington game Burton scored 19-of-22 points at one stretch of the game from 5:54 to play in the second half with his final point coming at the free throw line with 1 minute to play in overtime. He scored 19 of Nevada’s final 24 points in the game.
With 4.3 seconds to play he nailed a three-pointer to tie the score at 66 and send the game into overtime. In overtime he scored the Pack’s first eight points and his assist on a Kevin Panzer basket closed out the scoring for Nevada. With 1:41 to play in overtime his fourth, three-pointer of the game put the Pack on top to stay 72-70. He made both of his free throw attempts with 1 minute to play to close out his scoring.
In addition to the 31 points being a career-high it is the high in the WAC this season. The 40 minutes played, nine field goals and 18 attempted were also career bests. The four, three points tied his career high as did his six attempted. He also finished the game with six rebounds and six assists. Of his 31 points, 22 came after halftime.
Burton’s first 20-point game of the season came at UNLV when he scored a then career-high 28 points versus the Rebels. He scored 20 of Nevada’s 29 first half points at UNLV.
In the Western Athletic Conference he ranks in eight categories. His 15.2 points per game is fifth, 2.45 assist to turnover ratio leads the WAC, 4.45 assists per game is third, 1.18 steals per game is tied for 12th, 1.73 three-pointers made per game is ninth and 31.55 minutes per game is eighth. He ranks ninth in free throw percentage making 79.5 percent of his opportunities and 41.3 percent from three-point range is sixth.
HUNT RECORDS THIRD CONSECUTIVE DOUBLE-DOUBLE - Senior forward Dario Hunt has recorded three consecutive double-doubles. It started with 14 points and 12 rebounds in the 69-61 victory at Arizona State and he followed that with 10 points and 10 rebounds in a 70-64 victory at Montana. The third was a 12 point, 11 rebound effort in a 71-47 victory over UC Riverside. Hunt now has 14 career double-doubles. The 14 points at ASU is his season high.
In the last eight games Hunt is averaging 10.4 points and 8.4 rebounds per game. Over the same eight-game stretch he is shooting 51.6 (33-of-64) percent from the field.
On the season Hunt has five double figure rebounding games and all five have been game highs. He grabbed a season-high 13 versus Pacific and he followed that with 11 in the Prairie View A&M game. In his career he has 22 career double figure rebound games. In the last four games he has led the Pack in rebounding and a total of seven times this year and 44 times in his career.
PACK GOING TO THE LINE - Nevada continues to get the free throw line with frequency, having made more free throws than opponents has attempted. The Wolf Pack has made 180 free throws and the 11 opponents have combined to attempt just 162. Nevada has attempted 285 free throws, over 100 more than opponents have attempted, 162.
The Pack has attempted more free throws than its opponents in 10-of-11 games this season. Montana became the first team to attempt more free throws than Nevada in a game this season, 29 for the Grizzlies and 19 for the Wolf Pack. The Montana game also marked the only time an opponent has made more free throws than the Pack, 21 for UM and 13 for Nevada. In the Washington game both teams made 15 free throws. The Pack shot a season-high 25 more free throws than Prairie View A&M.
Despite the numerous opportunities at the charity strip, Nevada is shooting just 63.2 percent at the free throw line and opponents 67.3 percent. Nevada shot a season-high 75.8 percent from the line at Arizona State making 25-of-33 free throws. Point guard Deonte Burton made 13-of-15 free throws versus ASU including making his first 11 and 15 in a row going back to the end of the Washington game.
Sophomore Malik Story tops the team with his 85.7 percent from the free throw line which ranks third in the Western Athletic Conference. Burton is ninth in the WAC shooting 79.5 percent from the line.
STORY TOPS THE WAC IN THREE-POINT SHOOTING - Junior guard Malik Story leads the WAC and ranks eighth nationally in three-point percentage making 49.2 percent of his attempts. Story’s 2.64 three-pointers made per game is third in the conference and 64th in NCAA I.
Story made a career-high seven, three-pointers in Nevada’s 80-78 victory over Longwood. Story was good on 7-of-10, three-point attempts versus the Lancers and finished with 28 points on the night. The 28 points is tied with Deonte Burton for the second highest scoring game for the Pack this season. His previous high for three-pointers was six that he accomplished twice last season, with the last being against Fresno State in the WAC Tournament.
Story is eighth in the WAC in scoring at 14.1 points per game. The 6-5 guard, is shooting 85.7 percent from the free throw line to rank third in the conference and his 2.1 assists per game is 15th.
CARTER NOTCHES 40TH WIN - Third-year head coach David Carter notched his 40th win at Nevada when the Pack defeated Arizona State 69-61. Carter is 42-35 leading the Wolf Pack basketball program. In his first season the Pack went 21-13 and advanced the second round on the NIT. Last year the young squad posted a 13-19 record.
REMEMBERING MILTON - In remembrance of University of Nevada president Milton D. Glick who passed away of a stroke on April 16, 2011, the Wolf Pack men’s basketball team will wear an MG patch on their shorts. Glick, 73, was the 15th president of the University of Nevada.
BURTON FIFTH PACK PLAYER TO EARN PRESEASON WAC POY NOD - Point guard Deonte Burton became the fifth Nevada player and sixth overall to be selected as the WAC Coaches’ Preseason Player of the Year. Kirk Snyder (2003-04), Nick Fazekas (2005-06 & 2006-07), Armon Johnson (2008-09) and Luke Babbitt (2009-10) were all preseason players of the year with Fazekas earning the honor twice. Snyder, Fazekas (twice) and Babbitt all earned the honor at the end of the season when chosen as the preseason player of the year. Like Burton, Babbitt and Johnson were both sophomores when they earned the preseason honor.
A Nevada player has been named the season ending WAC Player of the Year in five of the last eight seasons with Fazekas grabbing the honor three consecutive seasons from 2003-2007.
Johnson and Babbitt are currently on the roster of the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers. Snyder was first round pick of the Utah Jazz and Fazekas was chosen in the second round by the Dallas Mavericks. Both played for several teams in the NBA.
Burton was the fourth Pack player to earn WAC Freshman of the Year honors last year when he averaged 13.7 points and 3.5 assists per game. Ramon Sessions (2005), Johnson (2008) and Babbitt (2009) were the previous Nevada players named WAC Freshman of the Year. Sessions, a second round pick of the Milwaukee Bucks, is currently on the roster of the Cleveland Cavaliers.
YOUNG GUNS NO MORE - Nevada was dominated by first-year players last season with nine new faces on the 14-man roster. This season there are two new faces on the 13 player roster. The Wolf Pack returns 93 percent of its offense from last season. All five starters are back in Deonte Burton, Malik Story, Jerry Evans Jr., Dario Hunt and Olek Czyz. Burton, Story and Hunt started all 32 games while Czyz made 21 starts and Evans 20. Four other players who made starts last season are back in Kevin Panzer (10), Jordan Burris (6), Jordan Finn (3) and Devonte Elliott (3). Patrick Nyeko appeared in 26 games last year and earned the team’s Sixth Man Award. Junior guard Keith Fuetsch is back for his third season in the program giving the Pack 11 letterwinners on the 2011-12 roster. The two newcomers are freshmen Richard Bell and sophomore Brice Crook.
HUNT RECORDS 200TH CAREER BLOCK, NEARS 800 REBOUNDS - Senior forward Dario Hunt broke the Nevada career blocks record in the season-opener versus Missouri State with the 193rd block his career. In the Longwood game Hunt recorded his 200th career block and now has 214 in 111 games. He came into the season tied with Nick Fazekas (2004-07) with 192.
Hunt had six blocks in the Pack’s 66-60 loss to New Mexico State in the WAC Tournament last year to move into a tie with Fazekas. Hunt’s 214 blocks have come in 111 games while Fazekas’ 192 came in 131 games. Hunt has three of the top five seasons in school history with his best year of 67 during the 2008-09 season ranking third and is the freshman record. In 2009-10 he had 66 which are fourth on the list and his 59 last year ranks fifth.
Hunt made his 100th career start versus Washington (12/2) and now has 103 in the Silver & Blue. The 6-8 forward, has started 103-of-111 games played in his career. He has started the last 47 games and 80 of the last 81 games.
Hunt is also climbing the Nevada rebounds career chart with his 790 ranking seventh. His nine in the MSU game moved him over 700 for his career and the five against Bradley pushed his total to 750. With 10 more rebounds he will become the sixth Nevada player to grab 800 in the Silver & Blue. Ric Herrin (1989-93) is sixth with 815 rebounds.