Nevada Wolf Pack women get 1st postseason win since 2011
RENO — Playing in its first postseason tournament since 2011, the Nevada women’s basketball team earned a 70-60 win Thursday over UC Irvine in the first round of the Women’s Basketball Invitational.
The win had a few historic implications as the Wolf Pack won just its second contest in a postseason tournament and its first since it defeated Saint Mary’s in the WNIT in 2011. Also the victory was the Wolf Pack’s 18th of the season, which ties Amanda Levens with Jane Albright for winningest first-year head coach. The win advances Nevada to the second round of the WBI, where it will take on Mountain West foe Fresno State on Monday in Fresno, Calif., at 7 p.m.
Nevada and Fresno State split the season series, each winning on their home court.
Thursday’s contest also saw a few individual achievements. Senior T Moe scored a game-high 18 points and moved into 10th in career scoring at Nevada, passing Tahnee Robinson and Danika Sharp. Moe also passed Kate Smith for third in career free throws made.
Fellow senior Teige Zeller added 17 points and 14 rebounds to notch her 12th double-double of the season.
Juniors Jade Redmon and Terae Briggs also reached double figures, each scoring 10 points.
The game was not the cleanest as the Wolf Pack committed a season-high 27 turnovers. The full court press by the Anteaters (18-14) gave Nevada (18-16) fits in the first half, causing 19 turnovers. The Pack made adjustments at halftime though and found ways to break the press and commit just eight turnovers in the second half.
The Nevada defense caused fits for UC Irvine as well, causing 19 turnovers and getting eight steals. With 46 total turnovers in the game, the Anteaters barely won the points off turnover battle, scoring 22 points to the Pack’s 20.
The Pack defense held the Anteaters to 32.4 percent shooting from the field and 15.8 percent from beyond the arc. Nevada held UC Irvine’s top scorer, Morgan Green who averages over 20 points per game, to 14 points on 4-of-17 shooting. Additionally the Pack won the battle on the boards for the 25th time this season, grabbing 45 rebounds to the Anteaters’ 32.