Behind a career-high 34 points from senior T Moe, the Nevada women’s basketball earned an 86-74 road win over Fresno State in Monday’s Women’s Basketball Invitational quarterfinals.
The victory presented a lot of firsts for the Wolf Pack women’s basketball program. Nevada has now won two postseason tournament games for the first time in program history and is two wins away from capturing its first postseason title. Additionally tonight’s win marked just the third road win over Fresno State and first since 2013. With a regular season win over the Bulldogs (17-15) back in December, this is the first time the Wolf Pack has beaten the Bulldogs twice in the same season.
Monday’s victory gives the Pack 19 wins on the year, the most since it won a program-record 22 games in 2010-11 and makes Amanda Levens the winningest first year coach in program history. On a player level, Moe set records of her own Monday night aside from a career-high 34 points. During the game she passed both Ieesha Donadelle and Shavon Moore on the all-time scoring list and now sits eighth with 1,119 career points.
The game itself was a tale of two halves. The Pack came out firing on all cylinders in the first half, going on long runs to back the Bulldogs into a corner. Nevada shot an impressive 69.2 percent in the first quarter, which included going 2-of-3 from beyond the arc, to stake a 20-8 lead after the first 10 minutes. It only got better from there as Nevada put up 26 points in period two, connecting on 8-of-15 from the field. Fresno State had a better shooting quarter in the second but combined with its 25.0 percent clip from the opening period it trailed Nevada by 22 points, 46-24, going into halftime.
With their season on the line the Bulldogs were the ones who came out firing to start the second half. Nevada still posted a solid offensive quarter, scoring 18 points on 57.1 percent shooting, but Fresno State couldn’t miss. The Bulldogs put up 19 shots in the third, making 13 of them and were led by senior Candice White who finished the game with a game-high 40 points. Fresno State used a 29-18 advantage in the third to cut it to an 11-point deficit as the game headed into the final period.
In the fourth Fresno State connected on more field goals than Nevada but the game came down to free throws. The Pack made 13-of-16 from the line in the fourth quarter alone, while the Bulldogs were sent to the line just twice. After trailing by 26 points at one point, Fresno State made it a three-point game when White swished in a three with 2:33 to play. Nevada was able to stretch the lead back up to six after successful free throws by Moe and Teige Zeller but the real dagger came on a clutch three ball from Moe that pushed the lead up to nine with just over a minute to go. In the final minute Nevada made 7-of-8 from the free throw line to seal the win and advance to the WBI semifinals.
Along with Moe, Zeller reached double figures for the 30th time this season with 13 points and fell one rebound shy of her 13th double-double of the year. Sophomore Camariah King also added 11 points and was perfect from beyond the arc, hitting 3-of-3. Nevada won the rebounding battle for the 26th time this season, edging the Bulldogs 33-28.
Nevada will travel to Conway, Ark. to face Central Arkansas in the WBI semifinals this Saturday, March 24 at 3 p.m. PT.
-Nevada defeated Fresno State 86-74 Monday night to advance to the WBI semifinals. This is the first time in program history that the Wolf Pack has won two postseason tournament games in the same season. Nevada will travel to Conway, Ark. to face Central Arkansas in the WBI semifinals this Saturday, March 24 at 3 p.m. PT.
-With 19 wins this season, Amanda Levens is now the winningest first year head coach in program history, passing Jane Albright.
-Senior T Moe scored a career high 34 points in the win, the first 30-point game of her career. She also passed Ieesha Donadelle and Shavon Moore on Nevada’s all-time scoring list, now in eighth with 1,119 career points.
-Senior Teige Zeller reached double figures for the 30th time this season with 13 points and fell one rebound shy of notching her 13th double-double of the year.
-Sophomore Camariah King also reached double figures, scoring 11 points on 3-of-3 shooting from beyond the arc.
-Junior AJ Cephas passed April Bankston for sixth in career blocks at Nevada.
-Nevada shot over 60 percent from the field and three-point line in the first half to build up a 46-24 lead at halftime.
-The Wolf Pack hit 81.3 percent from the free throw line in the game, one of its best marks of the season.
-Nevada’s shooting percentage of 56.0 percent was its second-best of the season as was its 69.2 percent shooting from beyond the arc.
-Nevada led in rebounding, 33-28, for the 26th time this season.
-The all-time series between Nevada and Fresno State now stands at 42-13 in favor of the Bulldogs. This is the first time the Wolf Pack has beaten the Bulldogs twice in the same season. It also marks Nevada’s third road win over Fresno State and first since 2013.
Nevada Press Release