Sparks Tribune and Associated Press
The Nevada men’s basketball team came in at No. 6 in Monday’s Ap Top 25 poll, making that the 16th consecutive week in the Top 10 this season and the 21st straight week in the Top 25 dating back to last season.
For the Pack, it’s one spot better than where they started when they came in at No. 7 in the preseason rankings. They got to as high as No. 5 on Nov. 26 and fell to as low as No. 10 after losing to New Mexico in early January.
The history making season continued on Saturday when they defeated Wyoming 82-49 in Laramie for their 10th win in-a-row and 24th of the season. The 24-1 start in the best in school history and tied for the best in Mountain West Conference history through 25 games.
With a 1.5 game lead over Utah State in the MWC standings and six games left on the schedule, the Wolf Pack enters one of its toughest stretches of the season. After playing at San Diego State tonight and hosting Fresno State on Saturday, Nevada hosts UNLV next Wednesday and plays at Utah State on Saturday. They end the season with games at Air Force and at home against the Aztecs.
Nevada has lost its last two meetings with San Diego State, including a 93-70 defeat in the semifinals of the conference tournament in Las Vegas last year.
Nevada 82, Wyoming 49
LARAMIE, Wyo. — Nevada relived last season’s double-overtime loss at Wyoming by watching video of fans storming the floor every day for the past week, and even just before taking the court Saturday night.
There were no fans storming the floor this time, as No. 7 Nevada easily beat Wyoming 82-49 for its 10th straight win.
Trey Porter led the way with 14 points, and Jordan Caroline and Caleb Martin each scored 13.
Jazz Johnson contributed 12 points and Tre’Shawn Thurman had 11 points and 12 rebounds for Nevada (24-1, 11-1 Mountain West). The Wolf Pack shot 54.4 percent from the field.
Nevada avenged last season’s loss at Laramie, when Wyoming defeated the then-No. 23 ranked Wolf Pack 104-103 in two OTs.
“We saw that film over and over again — losing in double overtime, the crowd rushing the court — you just don’t want that same feeling,” Thurman said.
Justin James led Wyoming (6-19, 2-10) with 16 points, followed by TJ Taylor with 13. The Cowboys were just 15 for 50 (a season-low 30 percent) overall and 6 of 24 from the 3-point line. The 49 points scored was the fewest this season by Wyoming.
Entering the game, the Cowboys had won five of their last six home games against ranked foes dating to 2012.
Nevada led from the beginning, building a 36-20 halftime advantage on nine points each by Thurman and Cody Martin. Wyoming got as close as 14 points on a basket by A.J. Banks to open the second half.
“I thought defensively we could have played a little bit better, but it’s good anytime you win on the road by that amount,” Nevada coach Eric Musselman said.
Wyoming coach Allen Edwards said Nevada played with great energy and effort for the full 40 minutes and never deviated from what it does best, which is play unselfish basketball.
“They play together; they played hard on both ends of the floor,” Edwards said.
Nevada: The Wolf Pack notch a road win at a venue that visiting teams find difficult to play in because of the 7,220-foot elevation of Laramie.
“It’s just so hard to get here,” Musselman said. “Guys are tired.”
Wyoming: The Cowboys continue to languish in second-to-last place in the Mountain West, but still have an 8-4 advantage at home against Nevada.
James lamented the lack of defense on the part of the Cowboys.
“We gave them anything they wanted,” he said. “It’s hard to win when they’re getting dunks and open 3s.”