The Runnin’ Rebels gained confidence that confidence in a big way with a 101-45 victory over Whitter College.
“[A let down game] was definitely a concern going," Runnin' Rebels head coach Kevin Kruger said. "Sometimes those hangovers can last a little longer than you want with all the emotion that was in that game.”
Although Kevin Kruger did not have the intentions of benching the starting lineup. It was the bench who got the offensive to spark early on in the second half. As the game started, the normal starting lineup; Jordan McCabe, Mike Nuga, Bryce Hamilton, Donovan Williams, and Royce Hamm Jr. The starters were able to gain a 9-8 lead into the first timeout.
After Kruger put the bench in, they went on a 44-8 run to spark a lead 53-16 at the half. It was evident during this run that it was the benches night.
“Tonight, especially that second group, they went out and took advantage of the minutes that they had and just played hard," Kruger said. "They played fun and widened the gap.”
Important players to the game such as Junior Justin Webster scored a team-high 17 on 7-of-10 shooting. Donovan Williams had a great night as well with grabbing 12 points for the team.
"It just lets us know we can play with anybody," Senior Marvin Coleman said. "It shows how good we can be, show our will and improvement."
Coleman had an incredible night adding 13 points on 6-of-10 shooting to the scoreboard. He also tallied nine rebounds and four assists.
During the second half, walk-on players Trey Hurlburt and Cameron Burist were given a warm welcome from teammates and fans. They got a chance to play for the first time this season. Hurbult scored four points and Burist scored five points.
"It was amazing," Coleman said. "Those guys work hard everyday. They are just a part of the team as anybody else."
The Runnin Rebels finished with a 101-45 victory over the Poets. All players seeing the court and racking points to help win the game. The team shot 52.6% from the field (40 of 76) and 42.9% on 3-pointers (12 of 28). UNLV had 26 assists and just eight turnovers.
The Rebels head into practice this Thanksgiving with a big challenge ahead. UNLV will face the second ranked UCLA Bruins Saturday afternoon.
"Our guys go out there, fight hard, and play together," Kruger said. "Hopefully this gives our guys a little boost of confidence to go out there and play free and have fun."
The Runnin’ Rebels remain in Las Vegas to compete at Thomas & Mack Center on Saturday, Nov. 27 as they face UCLA at 2 p.m.