Nevada used a 22-2 run in the second half on Tuesday night to surge past Pacific to a 77-67 non-conference victory in front of 6,920 at Lawlor Events Center.
When the run started, the Pack (6-2) found itself in a 50-46 hole with 10:34 left. When it ended five minutes later, on a D.J. Fenner triple, the home team held an insurmountable 68-52 lead.
The Wolf Pack improved to a perfect 4-0 at Lawlor. It was second-year coach Eric Musselman’s 30th total win Nevada and 20th at home. Pacific dropped to 2-3.
Freshman Josh Hall made his first start and finished with eight points on 3-of-7 shooting (2-of-3 from behind the arc). He was thrust into the lineup due to Monday’s arrest of Elijah Foster.
Foster was charged with first-degree domestic battery and contempt of court – stemming from an unpaid speeding ticket. He has been suspended indefinitely. Amid a breakout season, Foster is averaging 12 points and 7.8 rebounds a game.
Cameron Oliver and Marcus Marshall shared the team lead with 17 points. Oliver also pulled down eight rebounds, blocked five shots and passed out four assists. D.J. Fenner added 11 off the bench and Jordan Caroline finished one point shy of his fourth double-double, hauling in 10 rebounds.
Nevada was outscored in the paint, 32-16, but helped make up the difference connecting on 11-of-25 shots from deep.
The Pack starts a two-game road swing on Saturday in Peoria, Ill. against Bradley (4-3) as part of the Mountain West-Missouri Valley Challenge. Tip is at 5 p.m. and will be streamed on ESPN3.
Nevada, which lost its only true road game this season at St. Mary’s, then takes on its second Pac-12 opponent on Dec. 11 when it goes to Washington (4-2).
With 18:41 to go in the game, sophomore Cameron Oliver recorded his third block of the night. The block marked career block 123, moving him past JaVale McGee for fifth all-time in Nevada history.
Nevada went into the half up 31-26. It was the Pack’s first lead at the half since playing Oregon State and was just the third this season.
Marcus Marshall scored in double figures again, keeping his streak alive for every game this season.
Marshall led the team in scoring (17) for the fourth straight game. He tied with sophomore Cameron Oliver.
Oliver recorded at least three blocks for the 26th game in his career. He ended the night with five.
Nevada had less than four players in double-figure scoring for the just the second time this season.
Marshall has drained three or more shots from beyond the arc in every game beside one this season.