Spoonhour's debut as UNLV head coach was successful, and he hopes his Rebels don't have a letdown tonight vs. and undermanned Nichols State team.
UNLV 74 Wisconsin 69 - The Wisconsin Badgers were hit by a flurry over the first four minutes of the game and never fully recovered. UNLV sprinted to a 13-1 lead before the Badgers chipped away to close the game within four points at 15-11 when Kirk Penney drained a three pointer.
The Rebels went on another run over the next two minutes, this time outscoring the Badgers 9-0 after Lou Kelly hit a three pointer. Minutes later, UNLV built their largest lead of the night when Chris Richardson scored on a breakaway lay up to put the score at 31-17. The Badgers again chipped away at the lead and trailed the Rebels 36-29 at the intermission.
The second half was much like the first. UNLV managed to stay in control with leads from 6-10 points for most of the second half. UNLV built its largest lead of the second half at 59-47 with just over five minutes remaining.
The Badgers made things interesting by outscoring the Rebels 8-0 over the next two minutes to cut the score to 59-55 with 3:45 remaining.
Marcus Banks rattled home a three point basket with two minutes left to give the Rebels a comfortable 64-57 lead. Lou Kelly hit four free throws down the stretch to keep the Badger comeback hopes at bay.
Marcus Banks shined in his UNLV debut with 21 points on 9-13 shooting, six rebounds and four steals. However, he did struggle by going only 2-8 from the charity stripe.
Dalron Johnson tossed in 18 points and grabbed 7 rebounds. Lou Kelly and Chris Richardson rounded out the other Rebels in double figures with 17 and 15 points respectively. The four players in double figures accounted for 71 of UNLV's 74 points.
Devin Harris led Wisconsin with 20 points and connected on 5 of 8 three pointers.
UNLV next hosts Nicholls State Tuesday night at the Thomas and Mack Center.
Spoonball 1-0, and take on Nichols State tonight.
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