Falcons Fall to Rebels, 77-47
Feb. 27, 2010
AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. (AP) - After struggling to beat Air Force on their own court in late January, UNLV had little trouble handling the Falcons at Clune Arena Saturday afternoon.
Chace Stanback scored a career-high 21 points and UNLV hit a season-high 13 3-pointers en route to a 77-47 win over Air Force.
The Runnin' Rebels (22-7, 10-5 Mountain West) used a swarming man-to-man defense to shut down the Falcons (9-18, 1-13). UNLV was dominant from the start and used a 17-0 run midway through the first half to blow the game open.
It was UNLV's fifth consecutive victory over Air Force, which has lost seven straight and dropped 13 of its last 14 games.
"My teammates were looking for me a lot today, and I was able to knock down some shots," Stanback said. "We had a lot of open looks, and we expect to knock those down. We wanted to play hard defensively and execute offensively. We came out really tough, and everything happened for us and was on our side."
Kendall Wallace had 15 points, and Oscar Bellfield added 12 for UNLV, which shot 58.8 percent from the field. UNLV has now won its last three games after dropping three in a row from Feb. 10-17.
"We were very solid from the start," UNLV coach Lon Kruger said. "We were shooting the ball and made shots. On the other end, defensively, (there was) really good awareness. We were really sharp and alert on both ends."
The Runnin' Rebels improved to 9-3 on the road and swept their season series against the Falcons.
"You certainly have to give them credit defensively, but I thought they were even better offensively," Air Force coach Jeff Reynolds said of UNLV. "Their defense caused us to be extremely tentative early. They got us back on our heels and took control of the game right from the start. They are playing as well as anyone in the league."
The game in Clune Arena was vastly different from UNLV's tough 60-50 win over Air Force in Las Vegas on Jan. 26. The Falcons led 24-21 at the half in that contest, which was close throughout.
"At UNLV, we were able to control the game," Reynolds said. "What's ironic is that they only ran one play different than they did in the previous game, and yet we did not have the energy to get out and contest their shots."
Stanbeck was 8-of-13 from the field and grabbed a game-high eight rebounds to lead UNLV to the blowout victory. The Runnin' Rebels dominated virtually every statistical category, out-rebounding the Falcons 31-18 and tallying 24 assists to the Falcons' 10.
"It's tough when you lose like that, it's embarrassing," said Air Force's Tom Fow, who had eight points. "We know what we need to do, it's just a matter of doing it. We're trying to find the answers."
The Runnin' Rebels forced nine Falcons turnovers and hit six 3-pointers in the first half to take a 38-19 lead into the locker room.