UNLV blew an early 10-point lead, but used a 7-0 run late in the half to take a 34-29 advantage over San Diego into halftime.
The spurt gave the Rebels an eight-point lead, but Brandon Johnson was fouled on a 3-point attempt with one second remaining and hit all three free throws for the Toreros.
Oscar Bellfield and Wink Adams each have nine points in the first half for UNLV. The Rebels made five 3-pointers, but only attempted two free throws.
Danny Brown hit all three of the Toreros’ 3-pointers in the first half to lead them with nine points.
BELLFIELD MAKES KRUGER LOOK GOOD
Lon Kruger decided to give Oscar Bellfield the starting point guard spot over Memphis transfer Tre’Von Willis.
The decision sure looked good early in the game.
Before the first media timeout, Bellfield had hit a 3-pointer, dished out two assists and deflected a pass that led to a steal for Rene Rougeau.
Willis entered the game for Bellfield at that first break in the action.
When Bellfield returned later in the half, he hit two more 3-pointers to help UNLV grab the lead.
GREAT DEFENSE EARLY
San Diego did not score its first basket until Brandon Johnson hit a jumper with 15:45 remaining in the first half.
The Rebels were playing solid defense, but this is not the Toreros team that will be playing the rest of the season.
With 11 minutes to play in the half, San Diego had just four points.
While they eventually made a run to get right back in the game, it is obvious that the Toreros are missing the players that are not in uniform today.
BAD LOSS FOR THE MOUNTAIN WEST
Utah did not do the conference any favors in its quest to improve its national profile.
The Utes dropped a 80-79 decision to Southwest Baptist.
BAD NEWS FOR THE FOOTBALL TEAM
Colorado State defeated New Mexico on the football field In Fort Collins, Colo., keeping the Rams alive for bowl eligibility.
Ideally, UNLV would like Utah to get a BCS bid and have Colorado State lose its next game so that the Rebels would get one of the Mountain West’s automatic tie-ins should they beat San Diego State to become bowl eligible.