Nevada tops LMU In First Game Back From COVID-19 Pause
Nevada keeps winning streak alive, squeaks past LMU 68-63
Close win for the Wolf Pack
Nevada was able to push their winning streak to five games Saturday, in a late nightcap against Loyola Marymount University. The Wolf Pack found success once again relying on their guards in what turned out to be a sloppy game by both teams. There were 31 combined turnovers and neither team shot above 40-percent from the field. The largest lead was from Nevada was 10 with 13 minutes left to play in the game. The Wolf Pack was able to let the Bulldogs get back into this one, allowing LMU to tie the game at 63 with 1:30 left in the contest. Nevada was able to take a late lead and was able to squeak out a win against a WCC opponent, a conference that has been brutal to the Wolf Pack.
LMU, like Nevada, saw success in their guard play. Eli Scott and Demeane Douglas combined for 25 points and eight rebounds. However, it was the 6’6 junior forward from Melbourne, Keli Leaupepe, who shouldered the lion’s load for LMU. Leaupepe finished with a season-high 20 points including 15 from beyond the arc.
The Bulldogs as a whole struggled on both ends of the court. LMU averages over 50-percent from the field, but shot a mediocre 37-percent Saturday night. And while the Bulldogs aren’t known to light it up from deep, they only scored two threes outside of Leaupepe’s five shots from beyond the arc. The Bulldogs also struggled to keep possession of the ball. LMU finishes the game with 18 total turnovers including six from fifth-year guard Eli Scott.
Nevada kept the solid play continuing into Saturday night. Sherfield had yet another 20 point game finishing with 24 points by the time the final buzzer sounded. Wolf Pack fans also saw a nice point total from Will Baker finishing with 13 points and six rebounds. Fellow seven-footer Warran Washington also provided a good lift with seven points and eight rebounds.
However, Nevada as a whole struggled to score the ball. The Wolf Pack finished shooting 35-percent from the field and a mediocre 30-percent from beyond the arc. However, it was Nevada’s defense that was able to propel the Wolf Pack to get the win. Nevada was able to force 18 turnovers which e
This was a much-welcomed game for Nevada fans who were hoping to see a more well-rounded offensive attack from the Wolf Pack. While Sherfield finished with his usual 20+ points, Wolf Pack big men Washington and Baker combined for 20 points and 14 rebounds. If Nevada’s big men continue to give this kind of lift both on the offensive end and on the boards, then that is less of a workload that Cambridge and Sherfield have to shoulder offensively. Pair balanced offensive play with a defense that can force turnovers as Nevada can, then this Wolf Pack team can continue to get better and make a run against the better teams in this Mountain West Conference.
The MVP of this game goes to Grant Sherfield. This is Sherfield’s fifth game with at least 23 points and shows no signs of slowing. The 6’2 guard had an offensive efficiency of 110 and went an efficient 9-10 from the charity stripe.
Next up for Nevada (6-4) stays at home at faces a good Grand Canyon University (10-2) team on Tuesday, December 21st. For LMU (6-5), the Bulldogs go on the road to face Bellarmine (6-7) on Tuesday as well.