Free Throws Play Key Factor in 'Dogs Loss to Pack

Jan. 19, 2013

Final Stats

By Andrew Rich & Stephen Trembley

FRESNO, Calif. --- With a chance to move into third place in the Mountain West, the Fresno State men's basketball team fell 68-61 to Nevada, despite another strong night from junior Tyler Johnson.

Johnson poured in a team-high 16, including a career-high tying four three-pointers. It was the third time in his last five games that Johnson has made four triples.

The back-and-forth game featured eight ties and 14 lead changes. The final tie came with 4:22 to play when Kevin Foster scored on an offensive rebound and put back. After the Fresno State basket to tie, Nevada went on a 7-0 run over the next three minutes to pull away.

Early on it appeared as if the Bulldogs, the second-ranked defensive team in the conference, were in for another low-scoring, defensive battle. But, leading 27-22, Nevada found their touch and used a 6-0 run over the final 3:47 of the first half to pull ahead 28-27 going into the half.

The free throw line proved to be the 'Dogs demise in the second half. The Wolf Pack were 18-23 from the line in the second half compared to 6-12 by Fresno State. Nevada finished the game 30-37 at the stripe, mainly thanks to the shooting of Deonte Burton (12-15) and Malik Story (11-12). The Bulldogs finished 12-21 for the game.

Despite the cold night at the free-throw line, the opposite could be said for the Fresno State three-point shooting. A game after not making any three-points, the first time that had happened since a 1995 game against Princeton, the Bulldogs were 9 for 21. Johnson's four led the way and Kevin Olekaibe and Kevin Foster each made two.

Foster finished with 15 points and seven rebounds and Olekaibe was the other `Dog in double figures with 10.

The loss marked the fifth straight by Fresno State (7-10, 1-3 Mountain West) to Nevada (10-7, 1-2 MW). The Bulldogs return to action on Wednesday at Boise State.

"Discover Fresno State Athletics!" --- Fresno State's 4-Game Flex Mini-Plan starts as low as $14 per game and can be purchased by calling 559-278-DOGS (Monday-Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.) or visiting The flagship radio stations for Fresno State men's basketball are KMJ 580 AM (English) and ESPN Deportes 1600 AM (Spanish).