Nikki Wheatley had 15 points and Katie Powell 14 points and 11 rebounds to lead UNLV past Air Force 62-47 in a Mountain West women’s basketball game Wednesday in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
The Lady Rebels (8-15, 6-6) shot 46 percent and never trailed while halting a two-game skid and improving to 2-9 on the road. Emily Conroe scored 18 points for the Falcons (8-15, 4-8), who shot 28.8 percent in their third loss in a row.
Haley Jones had 11 rebounds for Air Force, which was outrebounded 40-38 and trailed by as many as 24 points in the fourth quarter in losing for the fourth time in 11 home games.
UNLV led 20-7 after one quarter, 35-22 at halftime and 50-33 entering the fourth quarter.
Senior right fielder Max Smith and junior shortstop Bryson Stott were named to the Mountain West’s preseason all-conference team, and league coaches picked the Rebels to place fourth in the seven-team league.
San Diego State and UNR each had three players on the all-conference team, and Fresno State and UNLV had two each. Air Force, New Mexico and San Jose State had one representative apiece.
San Diego, with 32 points and four first-place votes, was picked to win the Mountain West. Next were UNR (29 points, two votes), Fresno State (28 points, one vote), UNLV (24 points), Air Force (14 points), New Mexico (12 points) and San Jose State (eight points).
Junior En-Pei Huang was named Mountain West player of the week for the first time after going 6-0 in singles and doubles in helping the Rebels (5-2) to shutout wins over Youngstown State, Texas-El Paso and Weber State.
Huang, the third Rebel to take weekly conference honor this season, teamed with Aiwen Zhu to win three matches at No. 1 doubles by a combined 18-3 score, and Huang won three singles matches by a combined 36-8 score.
Zhu won her seventh career player of the week honor last month, and Izumi Asano was a first-time winner last week. This marks the third time UNLV has had three players gain the weekly conference honor in one season, also accomplishing the feat in 2010 and 2011.
Senior Elizabeth Prior and sophomore Polly Mack shared the Mountain West golfer of the week award after tying for medalist honors in the six-team Battle at Boulder Creek in Boulder City on Monday and Tuesday to open the spring season for the Rebels, who won the tournament by 39 strokes.
Prior, a native of Surrey, England, who notched her third tournament victory, shot 4-under-par 68 in the first round to match her single-round season low. She followed with two 74s to finish at even par.
Mack, from Berlin, posted her first win by closing with a 68.