Mens Basketball: Hawaii dumps 'Pack, 60-53

The Bows beat WAC preseason favorite Nevada, 60-53, to pick their first conference win of the season.

HONOLULU - The Hawai'i men's basketball team rebounded for a 60-53 victory over preseason Western Athletic Conference favorite Nevada, Monday night, at the Stan Sheriff Center. The victory evened the Rainbow Warriors' record to 1-1 in conference play and 9-3 overall.

Senior guard Michael Kuebler got out of his shooting slump with a 7-of-14 performance and 23 points. After converting 3-of-16 from the field in Saturday's loss to Fresno State, Kuebler drilled 2-of-3 from long range and out-dueled preseason WAC player of the year Kirk Snyder, who scored 21 for the Wolf Pack.

Senior forward Phil Martin chipped in with 10 points while sophomore forward Julian Sensley added 10 points and 11 rebounds, his fourth double-double of the season. Senior center Haim Shimonovich, who recorded two points and three rebounds against Fresno State, grabbed nine boards.

The pace went back and forth early in the first half. But the Wolf Pack took control after consecutive 3-pointers by Kyle Shiloh and Todd Okeson to go ahead 25-16. UH then responded with a 15-2 run over the final 8:12 to take a 31-27 halftime lead. Sensley tied the score at 27 with an electrifying baseline dunk that brought the crowd to its feet.

Before the teams left for the break, UH head coach Riley Wallace picked up a technical foul for arguing with the referees.

A reserve lay-up by Jason Carter gave UH its largest advantage at 45-35 with 10:57 remaining. Moments later, Nevada came roaring back. Four straight points by Nick Fazekas closed the margin to 45-41 with 7:35 to play. But the 'Bows answered with consecutive Martin jumpers to push its lead to 49-42.

After a Snyder trey, Sensley's dunk off a loose ball put UH ahead 53-45 with 4:52 left. The Wolf Pack closed to 53-48 after another Fazekas 3-pointer, but Jeff Blackett answered with a layup for a 55-48 UH lead with 2:29 remaining.

Nevada then misfired on its next two possessions and would get no closer than four the rest of the way.

Snyder connected on six of his first eight shots but finished 2-of-10 the rest of the game.

Up next for the 'Bows is a three-game, seven-day road trip beginning with San Jose State, Saturday, Jan. 10. Tip-off is set for 5:05 p.m. Hawaii time at The Event Center.

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