Fazekas is perfect for Nevada
Appeal Sports Writer
RENO – Nick Fazekas was perfect Saturday night in Nevada’s 81-67 victory over Boise State Saturday at Lawlor Events Center.
The 6-11 junior forward, who has been on a tear in the first four games of the Western Athletic Conference season, went 9 for 9 from the floor and 2 for 2 from the line en route to a 20-point performance.
He also pulled down 10 rebounds, giving him his sixth double-double of the season and 29th of his career. He has scored 20 or more points 11 times this year and now has seven games where he’s finished with 10 or more rebounds.
“I don’t think so,” Fazekas said when asked if he’d ever had a game where he didn’t miss a shot. “I’ve had quite a few where I missed one shot. It was only nine shots.”
Fazekas was asked if he’d had ice cream for breakfast a la teammate Kyle Shiloh.
“I didn’t do the Shiloh routine,” Fazekas said, drawing a laugh from the press corps.
NO START FOR SHILOH
Kyle Shiloh’s string of 47 consecutive starts over the last 1 1/2 seasons came to an end Saturday night.
“Coaches decision,” said a tight-lipped Mark Fox. Shiloh came into the game within the first seven minutes, leading media members to believe that he may have been late to a team function prior to the game.
Shiloh did plenty of damage once he entered the game. He finished with 17 points, the second straight game he has scored in double figures. It’s the first time in his two-plus years that he has scored double-digits in back-to-back games. He is 8 for 11 from 3-point range in the last two games.
“I love that kid,” Fox said, referring to Shiloh. “He’s a great kid. He’s really matured as a player. He’s playing well for us.”
GO TO THE GLASS
Nevada enjoyed a huge 47-30 edge on the boards, including 15 at the offensive end.
“We needed help from our guards,” Fazekas said. “They are a 3-point shooting team so there are going to be a lot of long rebounds. We took it upon ourselves to out-rebound them.”
Mo Charlo was especially effective, grabbing 11 total, six on the offensive board. Charlo notched his fourth double-double of the year and the fifth in his career. He got jump-started offensively by being aggressive on the boards, according to Fox.
The Pack visit always-tough Fresno State for a rare Wednesday night game at the Save Mart Center. Nevada pulled out a tough win there last year, a game which saw Fazekas suffer a broken nose late in the 76-63 win.
“I don’t know much about them,” Fazekas said. “They have a lot of new faces and a new coach. They are a team that competes. We have to play well.”
AROUND THE WAC
Louisiana Tech, 4-0, is still in sole possession of first place after its easy 73-54 win over Fresno State (1-2). Surprising New Mexico State improved to 3-1 in conference with a home win over Hawai’i, 80-74. Hawai’i fell to 2-2. Utah State evened its record to 2-2 with an easy 83-58 win over Idaho, which dropped to 0-4.
San Jose State had the week off and remains 0-2.
JOHNSON EARNS A START
Fox started Demarshay Johnson at center in place of Chad Bell, and Johnson responded with eight points and five rebounds in his 19-minute stint before fouling out.
“It felt good to start,” Johnson said. “It really wasn’t that much different. I just want to help the team the best way I can.”
“He started because he is doing the things we’ve asked him to do,’ Fox said.
Johnson’s athleticism around the basket is impressive as is his ability to get to the offensive glass.
FACTS & FIGURES
Nevada took advantage of its height edge, outscoring Boise State 42-28 in the paint …Boise State converted Nevada’s 18 turnovers into 13 points … Nevada did an outstanding job on Coby Karl, and the credit goes mainly to Charlo and Shiloh. Karl was only 4 for 10 from the floor … Seven seems to be Ramon Sessions’ lucky number. He had another seven-assist game, the fourth of the season … Seth Taylor had a rough outing, turning the ball over three times in a seven-minute stint in the second half … Nevada held hot-shooting Eric Lane to 1 for 7 from the field, including 1 for 5 from 3-point range.