Point guard commits to UNLV

Pulling out a tough 70-63 victory over Utah on Senior Day at the Thomas & Mack Center on Saturday was only one reason for Lon Kruger to be smiling afterward. The national coach of the year finalist also landed a verbal commitment from a talented point guard recruit.

Oscar Bellfield (6-1, 175) of Los Angeles City power Westchester High School, who watched the exciting win over the Utes with his family, confirmed afterward that he had verbally committed to the Runnin' Rebels.

"It was great," Bellfield said of the "White Out" game. "It was a great atmosphere. Great people. I'm loving it right now. … I'm committed) to UNLV)."

Actually, Bellfield said he informed Kruger of his decision 10 days earlier but wanted to wait until after his high school season ended before making an official announcement. Westchester (29-5) lost to King High of Riverside, 77-75, in the California state Division I quarterfinals on Tuesday night.

"I wanted to wait until I came here to announce it," Bellfield said shortly after touring the team's weight-lifting complex with strength coach Jason Kabo. "I took a visit here my junior year and I really liked it. I wanted to commit then but I didn't want to rush things. And then when the chance came around again to come here, I couldn't pass it up."

UNLV was back on the market for a point guard last month after sophomore Marcus Lawrence was booted off the team following his arrest for a DUI just hours before a key Mountain West Conference showdown with BYU.

By committing to UNLV, Bellfield will also get the chance to play with in the same backcourt as close friend Justin Hawkins (6-3, 180), a junior combo guard from Woodland Hills (Calif.) Taft who will be part of UNLV's 2009 signing class.

"We're real close," Bellfield said. "I call him my cousin. That's how close we are. We played on the same travel teams, park teams, high school … everything. Now we're going to play in college, too."

Bellfield had over a dozen Division I offers including Utah, Georgia, Virginia Tech, Nevada, Cal, Washington State, San Diego State and Oregon State.

"I like the atmosphere here and I like the way they play," Bellfield said. "The up-and-down tempo and tough defense, I really enjoy that."

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