UNLV vs Pepperdine
Photo Credit: UNLV Athletics/Russell Luna

FSM Essential Preview: UNLV vs New Mexico – Game 9

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UNLV (2-6) vs. New Mexico (4-6)

 

The Runnin’ Rebels host the New Mexico Lobos for a two game series at home.

 

 

UNLV vs New Mexico
Photo Credit: UNLV Basketball

UNLV will look to win consecutive games in a row for the first time this season as they get set to host New Mexico for two games. UNLV is coming off a dominating win over a winless St. Katherine team. The Runnin’ Rebels won that game by 61 points. That was their second win of the season with the first one coming on the road at Kansas State. UNLV now has a record of 2-6.

New Mexico comes into this series with a 4-6 record coming off a 9 point win at Dixie State. That was their first win in 7 games as they lost the prior 6 games before that after starting the season 3-0. All 6 of their losses this season have come against Mountain West Conference opponents. The Runnin’ Rebels will look to add to the Lobos loss column with wins in the next two games.

 

 

These games may be the most important games of the season for both teams.

 

UNLV vs New Mexico
Photo Credit: UNLV Basketball

Both teams could really use wins to get them back on track as it has been a slow start for both squads. UNLV does not want to fall to a 2-8 record. This team knows that these games against New Mexico are winnable games and the expectation is nothing sort of them coming out with victories.

The previous win for UNLV came against a non-division 1 school in St. Katherine, however, there is a lot from that game UNLV can hope to build off of.

UNLV won the game by a large amount, therefore, they were able to get some players more minutes than normal. Forward Moses Wood took full advantage of that. He scored 17 points off the bench only missing one shot from the field. Another big performance in that game came from

Senior forward Cheikh Mbacke Diong. He dropped his first double-double of the season with a game-high 18 points and 10 rebounds. He is quietly averaging 6 points and 8 rebounds a game while shooting 70 percent from the field. Diong tends to get overlooked because of the all-star performances from the likes of Bryce Hamilton, David Jenkins, and occasionally Caleb Grill.

The New Mexico Lobos will be looking for their first conference win of the season out in Las Vegas. A big key to them being able to do that will be strictly on their defense. Ten games into the season for them and how their defense plays end up having the biggest impact on their results. In every game that the Lobos has allowed 65 points or more, they have lost. In all 4 games that they have won, they have allowed 65 points or less.

They will be led by Makuach Maluach who leads the team in points, rebounds, and steals per game averaging 13 points, 5 rebounds, and a steal, respectively. Junior Saquon Singleton stepped up in their last win leading the team with 17 points. They will be looking to get the same production from their top players in both games in Las Vegas.

 

UNLV will look to build off their previous win and put together a winning streak.

 

The Runnin’ Rebels have no better chance than now to put together a winning streak as they play the next 5 games at home in the Thomas and Mack starting with Saturday and Monday against New Mexico. Two teams at the bottom of the Mountain West standings to start the season will both look to take advantage of the other team’s poor start. UNLV and New Mexico will battle it out twice in Las Vegas.

 

The UNLV Rebels host the New Mexico Lobos today at 2:30 on CBSSN. 

 

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-Jarret Thompson – Franchise Sports Media

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