Pilots top Wolf Pack basketball
Knutson leads Portland to win over Nevada
PORTLAND, Ore. ” Kramer Knutson scored 15 points as Portland survived a bad night at the foul line to register a 63-61 victory over Nevada at the Chiles Center on Saturday.
Knutson made 6-of-7 shots from the field before fouling out late in the contest. But he was only 3-of-6 from the foul line while the Pilots, who improved to 4-1, were 10-of-22 overall from the charity stripe.
Portland recovered by going 7-of-15 from the 3-point line. Point guard T.J. Campbell led the way from long distance by hitting all four of his attempts.
It was the 3-pointer that helped turn the game around for the Pilots, who trailed 37-33 at halftime. Portland’s first three possessions of the second half resulted in threes, including two by Campbell, which gave the Pilots a 42-39 lead.
Nevada freshman forward Luke Babbitt answered with his own 3-pointer and a short time later he scored from close range to tie the score at 46. Babbitt led all scorers with 17 points and also had a team-high eight rebounds.
Portland then reeled off eight unanswered points, including two close-range baskets by Luke Sikma, and the Pilots had the lead for good at 54-46.
Portland had its largest lead of the game when Nik Raivio hit a 3-pointer to put the Pilots in front 58-48 with 8 minutes, 29 seconds left. But the visiting Wolf Pack, which fell to 2-3, wasn’t done.
Nevada’s Brandon Fields converted a conventional three-point play, for his only field goal of the night, to cut Portland’s lead to 60-56 with 5:11 left.
The Wolf Pack cut the deficit to 63-61 when Babbitt hit one of two foul shots with 40 seconds remaining.
Nevada had a chance to score the tying basket but Armon Johnson’s driving one-hander rimmed in and out with one second remaining.
Campbell finished with 13 points for the Pilots while Raivio had 11.
Malik Cooke had 11 for the Pack.
The Wolf Pack returns to action on Dec. 2, when it travels to Colorado State. The Mtn. will televise the game, while ESPN 630 AM will broadcast the game on the radio with Ryan Radtke calling the action.
The Colorado State game ends a stretch of four-of-six games on the road to start the season for Nevada.