Nevada did something on Saturday night it hadn’t been able to do in three weeks: Put together a second-straight strong outing.
The Wolf Pack (21-6, 10-4) moved into a three-way tie atop the Mountain West alongside Boise State and Colorado State with a 77-66 win over Utah State in front of an announced crowd of 10,336 at Lawlor Events Center.
The Aggies, who thumped the Pack in Logan, Utah on Feb. 1 to start the stretch of uneven play, dropped to 11-15, 5-10.
Nevada, fresh off a 78-59 win at Air Force, is now on a mini two-game winning streak for the first time since it beat New Mexico at home on Jan. 28.
Nevada obliterated Air Force on the glass in its previous contest and continued that trend on Saturday night, outrebounding Utah State, 45-29 – a staggering total of 20 came on the offensive end.
Cam Oliver (14 points, 10 rebounds) and Jordan Caroline (15 points, 10 rebounds) both recorded double-doubles. It was Oliver’s eight and Caroline’s 10th, but just the second time the two accomplished the feat the same night. Oliver also tied a season high with five blocks.
Lindsey Drew came off the bench for the second straight game and grabbed 10 rebounds as well to go along with four assists and two points.
Marcus Marshall broke out of a four-game slump (which started in the loss at Utah State) with a game-high 22 points on 5-of-8 shooting from deep.
As a team, Nevada was 11-of-22 from beyond the arc. It was the second straight contest the Pack shot at least 50 percent from three-point land.
Marshall hit three triples in a span of 105 seconds early in the second half to grow an 11-point halftime lead to 50-36. Utah State never threatened from that point on.
D.J. Fenner was the fourth Nevada player in double figures. He scored 18 points, moving into 15th on program’s all-time scoring list (1,272 points).
With just four games left in the regular season and sitting in a three-way tie for first, Nevada is in complete control of its destiny.
Boise State comes to Lawlor Events Center on Wednesday (it will be the second time this year the two teams will play with first place on the line) looking to even the season series.
Nevada then wraps up the road slate with games at UNLV and San Jose State before putting the regular season to bed on March 4, at home, against Colorado State.