Free Throws Play Key Factor in 'Dogs Loss to Pack
Junior Tyler Johnson tied his career-high with four 3-pointers for the third time in his past five games.
Junior Tyler Johnson tied his career-high with four 3-pointers for the third time in his past five games.

Jan. 19, 2013

Box Score |  Quotes |  Notes |  Photo Gallery 

By Andrew Rich & Stephen Trembley

FRESNO, Calif. --- With a chance to move into third place in the Mountain West, the Fresno State men's basketball team fell 68-61 to Nevada before a season-best 7,829 fans at the Save Mart Center, despite another strong night from junior Tyler Johnson.

Johnson poured in a team-high 16, including a career-high tying four three-pointers. It was the third time in his last five games that Johnson has made four triples.

The back-and-forth game featured eight ties and 14 lead changes. The final tie came with 4:22 to play when Kevin Foster scored on an offensive rebound and put back. After the Fresno State basket to tie, Nevada went on a 7-0 run over the next three minutes to pull away.

Early on it appeared as if the Bulldogs, the second-ranked defensive team in the conference, were in for another low-scoring, defensive battle.

Post-Game Press Conference
Head Coach Rodney Terry

  1st 2nd Final
(10-7, 1-2 MW)
28 40 68
Fresno State
(7-10, 1-3 MW)
27 34 61
 Game Leaders
  Fresno State Nevada
 Points T. Johnson 16 Story 24
 Rebounds Brown 9 Evans 11
 Assists Anderson 6 Burton 3
 Steals Two w/ 2 Two w/ 2
 Blocks Upshaw 5 Elliot 4

 Team Comparison
  Fresno State Nevada
 PTS 61 68
 FG 20-54 (.370) 17-45 (.378)
 3pt FG 9-21 (.429) 4-11 (.364)
 FT 12-21 (.571) 30-37 (.881)
 REB 12-26 (38) 5-27 (32)
 TO 12 7

But, with the 'Dogs leading 27-22, Nevada found their touch and used a 6-0 run over the final 3:47 of the first half to pull ahead 28-27 going into the half.

The free throw line proved to be the 'Dogs demise in the second half. The Wolf Pack were 18-23 from the line in the second half compared to 6-12 by Fresno State. Nevada finished the game 30-37 at the stripe, mainly thanks to the shooting of Deonte Burton (12-15) and Malik Story (11-12). The Bulldogs finished 12-21 for the game.

Despite the cold night at the free-throw line, the opposite could be said for the Fresno State three-point shooting. A game after not making any three-points, the first time that had happened since a 1995 game against Princeton, the Bulldogs were 9 for 21. Johnson's four led the way and Kevin Olekaibe and Kevin Foster each made two.

Foster finished with 15 points and seven rebounds and Olekaibe was the other `Dog in double figures with 10. Freshman Marvelle Harris added nine points, while playing through foul trouble and fouled out in the final minute. The Bulldogs were whistled for 16 team fouls in the second half compared to just eight against the Wolf Pack in the final 20 minutes of the game.

In the low post, Fresno State freshman Robert Upshaw asserted his Mountain West-leading shot-blocking prowess on the defensive end of the floor and finished with five blocks - one of his career-high. Point guard Aaron Anderson also effectively ran the Bulldogs' offense with a career-best six assists.

Story led the Pack with a game-high 24 points and Burton added 22.

The loss marked the fifth straight by Fresno State (7-10, 1-3 Mountain West) to Nevada (10-7, 1-2 MW). The Bulldogs return to action on Wednesday at Boise State.

"Discover Fresno State Athletics!" --- Fresno State's 4-Game Flex Mini-Plan starts as low as $14 per game and can be purchased by calling 559-278-DOGS (Monday-Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.) or visiting The flagship radio stations for Fresno State men's basketball are KMJ 580 AM (English) and ESPN Deportes 1600 AM (Spanish).



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