Senior guard Wink Adams hardly lit up the scoreboard Wednesday night, but his performance was a little better in UNLV’s 82-76 victory at Fresno State.
After shooting a combined 5-for-25 in last weekend’s losses to California and Cincinnati, Adams shot 5-for-15 against the Bulldogs.
Four of his made field goals were layups, however. He shot 0-for-4 from 3-point range and 7-for-9 on free throws.
“It’s nice to see Wink be more aggressive and really attack the rim,” coach Lon Kruger said.
But it’s not time to announce the end of Adams’ shooting slump. His first shot was a mid-range jumper, and it was blocked. His second shot was a missed 3-pointer. His first points came on a 15-foot jumper that put the Rebels ahead 26-24 with 4:25 left in the first half.
He grabbed a rebound and scored on a fast-break layup 25 seconds later. As the first half ended, Adams launched a 3 that was an air ball.
“I had a lot of openings to get to the basket, and I got to the line a lot,” said Adams, who finished with 17 points and seven rebounds.
Green’s debut under review
Sidney Green, the Rebels’ No. 2 career scorer, debuted as a TV analyst when he called the Fresno State game. Green was not ready to call it a flawless debut. Sounding like a coach, he said he needed to review the tape before grading himself.
“I’m anxious to go back and look at it, and I’ll be a tough critic,” Green said.
Despite UNLV’s two early losses, Green said he sees promise in this team. To prepare for his TV job, Green watched tapes of seven games this season and several from last season.
“They need to continue to learn from the two losses,” he said. “There were a lot of positives tonight that I saw. I see a very good team that’s on the horizon.
“There are certain things that they have to iron out, which I’m sure will be ironed out by the conference season next month. It’s going to get better, especially with Wink Adams leading. He’s capable of carrying the team on his shoulders.”
Green played for the Rebels from 1979 to 1983, and his jersey No. 21 was retired in 1994.
Family fued goes to Willis
Rebels sophomore Tre’Von Willis was outscored by his half brother, Fresno State senior Dwight O’Neil, but Willis claimed bragging rights after UNLV’s victory.
“I definitely got one up on him,” Willis said. “He had a nice career, he’s a senior and I won’t get a chance to play against him again. So I’m 1-0 lifetime against him.”
Both are point guards, and they got their points. O’Neil had 21 points, 15 in the second half. Willis finished with 18, 14 in the second half. Willis said he had about 40 family members and friends in attendance.
“Tre didn’t try to do too much,” said Kruger, adding that Willis is evolving into a team leader. “We don’t have a lot of guys who are real talkative, and he’s one of them who can be, I think.”
Heating up the rivalry
Junior forward Darris Santee, who had a breakout performance with 21 points, knows nothing about UNLV’s next opponent. The Rebels go to Reno to face UNR on Saturday.
“I’ll learn everything in the next two days,” Santee said.
Asked about Luke Babbitt, the Wolf Pack’s star freshman, Santee said, “I’ve never heard of him.”