Sessions is chairman of the boards
Appeal Sports Writer
RENO – Ramon Sessions was one of the shortest players on the floor, but that didn’t stop him from grabbing a career-best 12 rebounds.
Sessions was asked if he remembered the last time he grabbed 12 rebounds in a game.
“I just take it one game at a time and do whatever the team needs me to do to win,” said the soft-spoken Sessions, who appears completely healthy after dealing with a nagging hip flexor injury earlier this year. “I don’t look at stats. They just dropped in my hands. The job is for guards to get the long rebounds.”
Sessions was just being modest. On one occasion in the second half, he soared above teammate Nick Fazekas to grab a carom.
Sessions also dished out seven assists, had two steals and one blocked shot. He had just two turnovers in his 32-minute stint, his longest of the season.
The Pack’s talented sophomore guard was only 1 for 9 from the floor, and Nevada coach Mark Fox is confident his shooting stroke will return.
“He didn’t shoot very well,” Fox admitted. “That’s due to the fact that he hasn’t been able to practice at game speed.”
MITCHELL WAS A CHALLENGE
It took a while, but Dwayne Mitchell finally made some shots late in the game to finish with 20 points and 10 rebounds.
The 6-foot-5 Mitchell, who scored eight points in the first half, finally reached double digits with 4:07 left in the game. He went on to score 10 more points, four of those coming in the final minute. Mitchell entered the game averaging 19 points and 12 rebounds per game.
Mo Charlo and Kyle Shiloh, two of the Pack’s top perimeter defenders, played well on Mitchell for 35 minutes.
“He’s extremely explosive,” Fox conceded. “I felt we guarded him with 1 1/2 guys. He’s a hard guy to guard. I don’t think he got a 3-pointer on us, and he’s been shooting those well. He got some stuff late on us. He’s a great player.”
Mitchell even played some minutes at point guard when coach Robert Lee wanted to go with a bigger, physical lineup.
Nevada’s 10-1 start equals the 10-1 start put together by the 1978-79 squad coached by Jim Carey.
That team split its first two games and then reeled off nine straight wins before losing again. Nevada beat Eastern Kentucky, Cal and Georgetown in that stretch before losing 90-76 at Portland.
LEE PRAISES PACK
Louisiana-Lafayette has played some big-name schools – Georgia Tech, Tennessee, UTEP and LSU – and Lee ranks Nevada at the top.
“I think Nevada is the most complete team we have played,” Lee said. “This was a good game for us to have to get ready for conference. It showed we can compete at the level Nevada is at.”
It very well could have been a different story had 6-10 Chris Cameron played. It would have given the Ragin’ Cajuns another big body on the floor. Cameron dislocated his shoulder against LSU and has missed the last two games.
FACTS & FIGURES
The Sagarin rankings came out today, and Nevada had moved up to 17th. No doubt the four road wins plus the victory over Georgia is the main reason … Nevada was the first ranked team that Louisiana-Lafayette has played this season … In all of Nevada’s wins, it has led at halftime … Nevada is 6-0 at home this season and 34-4 since the 2003-04 season. Nevada has won over 72 percent of its games since Lawlor Events Center opened during the 1983-84 season … Nevada is 4-0 when holding opponents to under 60 points …Nevada was outrebounded 44-42, only the second time the team has been beaten on the boards … Mo Charlo managed just six points, the second straight contest he has failed to score at least 10 points. He is 4 for 13 from the field in the last two contests.