RENO – Jordan Caroline won over the Nevada fans with his hustle and grit the minute he took the floor.
And, the 6-foot-7 redshirt sophomore made two of the game’s biggest plays down the stretch to help Nevada grab an 85-77 victory over Boise State Wednesday night at Lawlor Events Center.
The first came with Nevada holding a 70-67 lead. Zach Haney misfired, and the ball appeared to be headed out of bounds. Caroline saved it, and Cam Oliver was fouled and made one of two to give the Pack a 71-67 lead with 3:37 left.
The second came about 90 seconds later. Marcus Marshall missed a 3-point attempt, but Caroline grabbed the rebound, was fouled and drained the ensuing two foul shots to make it 76-72 with 2:08 left.
“He’s a great energy player,” coach Eric Musselman said. “I thought it was his best defensive game of the year. We come to expect his energy, enthusiasm and emotion for the game.”
Caroline was unavailable for comment. He wasn’t one of the three players selected to come to the interview room.
Caroline, who scored 21 points, eclipsed 20 points for the fifth time this year, including his 45-point game at New Mexico.
RADTKE MISSES GAME
Nevada play-by-play man Ryan Radtke missed the game. No reason was given for his absence.
Alex Margulies from Channel 4 filled in. It was his first time calling a Nevada men’s basketball game.
“I found out Monday,” he said. “It was awesome; was a blast. Working with a pro like Len Stevens. It was unbelievable to get to call a game with what was at stake.”
Margulies does the sideline reporting at Nevada football games.
Nevada is now 6-0 in games where it wears silver uniforms.
The Pack is 1-0 in its Battle Born uniforms, 2-0 in pink and 2-0 in turquoise.
The Nevada Wolf Pack (22-6, 11-4 MW) retained its tie for first in the Mountain West with an 85-77 victory over the Boise State Broncos (17-9, 10-5 MW) Wednesday night, now knotted up with the Colorado State Rams atop the conference.
DID YOU KNOW
With three conference games to go, Nevada has surpassed its conference win total of 10 from the 2015-16 season… For the second time this season and the first time since the home Iona game on Nov. 20, three Wolf Pack players netted 20 points or more. Marshall led the way with 26, and Cam Oliver and Caroline added 21 apiece … Oliver had his ninth double-double of the season, finishing with 21 points and 11 rebounds.