UNLV-TCU: Rebels Romp at Home 78-62
Tre'Von Willis led four Rebels with double figures in scoring as UNLV pounded the TCU Horned Frogs at the Thomas and Mack Center here in Las Vegas on Wednesday night.
Willis, playing only 22 minutes, scored 16 points along with four rebounds, three assists, and three steals. He went 5-7 from the floor, 2-4 beyond the arc, and a perfect 4-4 from the line. Once the Rebels took a 31 point lead early in the second half, Willis was relegated to the bench for some much-needed rest.
Averaging over 21 points in conference games this year, Willis is definitely in the running for Mountain West Player of the Year.
For the second game in a row the Rebels used a balanced scoring attack as all nine players who saw action got in the scoring column.
Chase Stanback also had 16 points, along with seven rebounds, six assists, three steals, and two blocked shots.
Brice Massamba had his second straight excellent game with 10 points and nine rebounds, and most importantly six of those boards were offensive, giving the Runnin' Rebels the rebound advantage. In their last 10 games the Rebels are 7-3. In all the games they won they also had the most rebounds. In their three losses they were badly out-rebounded by their opponent.
They definitely need a healthy Matt Shaw and Derrick Jasper for the Mountain West Conference Tournament which begins March 9th here in Las Vegas.
Kendall Wallace hit four three-pointers on his way to 12 points and also two steals.
The Rebels defense produced 22 turnovers making TCU look very sloppy for 30 minutes of the game. In the last 10 minutes the Horned Frogs made a very nice run cutting the 31 point lead down to 12 with just under three minutes to play.
Ronnie Moss led TCU with a game-high 25 points while Zvonko Buljan added 21 for the Horned Frogs.
Two games down and two to go for the Runnin' Rebels to pad their resume for the NCAA selection committee. Perhaps their most important game of the year comes this Saturday afternoon when the Rebels travel to the Air Force Academy where the Falcons play very well on their home court. This is another must win along with their final home game a week from Saturday against Wyoming.
I have spoken freely about UNLV's worst nightmare for the Mountain West Tournament. That's Utah, a team that has beaten the Rebels twice this season and currently sits in sixth place in the conference standings. The Rebels 9-5 are tied with San Diego State for third place. If the Rebels are alone in third place at seasons end they will face the Runnin' Utes one more time.
Not a very pleasant thought.
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