MOSCOW, Idaho (AP) -- Nevada's first game after returning to the
Top 25 was a setup for an upset. The Wolf Pack faced a team with
four wins on the road on a Monday afternoon.
Nick Fazekas didn't let the unthinkable happen.
The 6-foot-11 junior forward had 26 points and 15 rebounds as
the Wolf Pack won their straight, a 74-68 victory over Idaho.
"We just played sloppy toward the end in that last minute and
turned it into a close game," he said.
"We treat every game the same," he said, referring to facing
the Vandals early in the day.
The start time was moved to 1 p.m. due to a scheduling conflict
at Cowan Spectrum with Idaho's Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival.
"This means just as much as any other game," Fazekas said.
"We can't afford to really lose any games and we don't want to
lose any games, because losing is not accepted.
"We get up for every game. It doesn't matter who we're
Marcelus Kemp added 19 points for the Wolf Pack (21-5, 10-3
Western Athletic Conference), who were ranked for the first eight
polls of the season then fell out for seven weeks before moving in
again earlier Monday.
Idaho (4-19, 1-10) has lost four in a row and 13 of 14.
It was the 13th double-double of the season for Fazekas, who
leads the WAC in scoring (21.6) and is second in rebounding (10.0).
He was 9-of-16 from the field and did most of his damage in the
second half, with 16 points and nine rebounds.
"He didn't have lot of bounce to him today," Nevada coach Mark
Fox said. "But he shows what kind of player he is when he doesn't
play as well as he can play and still gets those kind of numbers."
Even so, the Wolf Pack never managed to put Idaho away for good.
The Vandals trailed by as many as 17 points in the first half, yet
made a game of it down the stretch.
Fox called it an "ugly" outing for his team.
"I thought everything was very flat," he said. "I thought it
was kind of a grind-it-out, late-February-type of game. We were
fortunate to build a lead and hang on. That's all we did was hang
The Wolf Pack outscored Idaho 15-6 to start the game, then put
together a 13-3 run to go ahead 32-15 with 4:09 left in the first
Idaho cut it to 56-48 on Mike Kale's putback with 6:45 left, and
had a shot to get closer but Tanoris Shepard missed a runner in the
lane. Brett Ledbetter then was charged with a technical following a
verbal exchange with Fazekas at the other end. Kemp hit both free
throws on the technical to put the Wolf Pack ahead 58-48.
Ramon Sessions added 10 points for Nevada, which outrebounded
Shepard scored 18 points for the Vandals, while Ledbetter had 16
and Kale 10.
Idaho coach Leonard Perry said his team was "disappointed with
The Vandals are in their first season in the WAC after moving
from the less-competitive Big West Conference.
"We've been through some tough times, but we've gotten
better," Perry said. "The problem is who we're playing. We
happened to be playing the best team in the league (today)."