Three-Point Attacks Leads Lady Rebels

Jan. 20, 2013

LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) - Facing a packed-in zone for almost the entire game, UNLV took advantage of its open looks from outside by knocking down a school-record tying 12 three-pointers on the way to a 63-50 victory over Colorado State on Sunday afternoon in Mountain West women's basketball action at the Cox Pavilion. The Lady Rebels tied their league mark at 2-2 with the win, 6-12 overall, while CSU dropped to 1-2 in the MW, 5-11 for the season. The 12 three-pointers made by UNLV was double it's previous season-high. It was also the fifth time in school history the Lady Rebels have made that many in a game, most recently in a win against Columbia on Dec. 29, 2010.

"For us to hit that many threes, I was pleasantly surprised, but our team took good shots, we had good looks and made the extra pass threes," said UNLV head coach Kathy Olivier. "Briana Charles gave us great energy off the bench today as well, and I thought we just had a great team effort overall."

Colorado State led at the start of the game however, with the Lady Rebels starting out cold from the floor. CSU made seven of its first 10 shots from the floor, and went up 16-8 on a layup from Kara Spotton with 12:06 on the clock. Charles then entered the game for UNLV and made an immediate impact. She knocked down the first two three-pointers of her career just 71 seconds apart, which added to a layup from Alana Cesarz tied the game at 16-16. After a layup from Spotton to put CSU back ahead for what would be its final lead of the game, UNLV scored another seven unanswered points. Charles knocked down a jumper to cap the run, making it a combined 15-2 run over a 3:40 span for a 23-18 lead. The Rams did cut the edge down to one twice in the final minutes of the half, but Kelli Thompson drained a long three with three seconds to go for a 29-25 UNLV halftime advantage. Besides hitting six three-pointers in the first half, the Lady Rebels also forced 15 turnovers, and held an 18-2 edge on points off turnovers for the half.

After CSU tied the game two minutes into the second half on a jumper from Hayley Thompson, another UNLV trey, this time from Danielle Miller, put the Lady Rebels back ahead by three. Meghan Heimstra responded with a pair of free throws, but UNLV reeled off eight quick points in a two-minute span. A jumper from Charles made the score 40-31 with 14:51 on the clock. CSU made one final run, four straight points to close within 40-35. Another 8-0 run, capped by back-to-back treys from Rmanii Haynes, put UNLV back ahead by double-figures at 45-35, and CSU would get no closer the rest of the way. UNLV's largest lead of 16 came of a pair of free throws with 7:59 to play for a 58-42 edge.

Two Lady Rebels finished with new career-highs in scoring, highlighted by Charles' performance off the bench. The sophomore, who came into the game averaging 2.3 ppg, posted a team-high 16 on 6-of-6 shooting, which included making all four attempts from behind the arc. Haynes also turned in a new career-high with 11 points, while three made treys was a career-best as well. Thompson dished out a career-high nine assists to go along with eight points, six rebounds and five steals, while Cesarz finished with 14 points and seven rebounds.

As a team, UNLV shot 38.2% (21-of-55) from the floor, 56.2% (12-of-26) from three-point range, and 9-of-10 at the line for 90%. The Lady Rebels held a 32-28 rebounding advantage, and forced 23 turnovers for the game, leading to a 24-4 edge on points off turnovers. UNLV also finished with 14 steals.

Caitlin Duffy paced the Rams with a game-high 17 points, while Heimstra added 12. CSU shot 39.5% for the game (17-of-43), was 4-of-14 from downtown for 28.6%, and made 12-of-13 at the line for 92.3%.

The Lady Rebels return to action with their second conference road game of the season, a Wednesday, Jan. 23 contest at Wyoming in Laramie. Tipoff is set for 6 pm (PST).