• Utah State begins a two-game road trip at Nevada on Saturday, Feb. 18, at 6 p.m. (MT). The game can be heard live on KVNU with Al Lewis providing play-by-play. Fans can also watch the game on ESPN3, online at watchespn.com, with Trey Bender providing play-by-play and Bell Herenda providing color.
• Utah State and Nevada will meet for the 54th time on Saturday night, the 16th-longest series in USU history. The Aggies lead the all-time series 36-17, including a 14-13 advantage on the road in Reno.
Things Of Note
• Senior wing Jalen Moore needs nine more points to move to No. 11 on the all-time scoring list, tying Reid Newey (1984, 87-89) with 1,536 career points and 18 more points to move to No. 10 on the all-time scoring list, tying Eric Franson (1991, 94-96) with 1,545 career points.
• Freshman guard Koby McEwen leads all freshmen in the Mountain West in points per game (14.8), assists per game (2.9) and minutes per game (31.0) and is second among freshmen with 5.0 rebounds per game.
• McEwen matched Jaycee Carroll’s freshman single-game scoring record with 28 against UNLV (1/7) earlier this season. In all, McEwen has scored 20 or more points five times this season, two short of Carroll’s best of seven during his freshman season.
• Utah State held Nevada to season lows in points (57), field goals made (22), field goal percentage (31.9), 3-point field goals made (4) and 3-point field goal percentage (15.4) in the first game between the two schools this season. The Wolf Pack shot just 22-of-69 from the field, including 4-of-26 from beyond the arc, and 9-of-20 from the free-throw line (45.0 percent).
• Utah State has outrebounded the opposition in five of the last six games, holding a rebounding margin of +7.3 over that span.
Nevada is 20-6 on the year and 9-4 in the Mountain West, including a 74-57 defeat at Utah State on Feb. 1.
The Wolf Pack are averaging 78.9 points per game and shooting 44.7 percent (687-of-1,538) from the floor, 38.4 percent (236-of-614) from behind the 3-point line and 68.9 percent (441-of-640) at the free throw line. Marcus Marshall paces four double-digit scorers for Nevada with a team-best 19.1 points per game and is followed by Cameron Oliver (15.5 ppg), D.J. Fenner (15.0 ppg) and Jordan Caroline (13.8 ppg). Caroline also leads the team on the glass, averaging 9.1 rebounds per game. Lindsey Drew directs the Nevada offense and leads the team with 133 assists on the year, averaging a MW-best 5.1 per game.
Defensively, opponents are averaging 71.5 points per game against the Wolf Pack and shooting 42.9 percent (692-of-1,613) from the floor, 29.1 percent (161-of-554) from behind the 3-point line and 69.4 percent (315-of-454) at the free throw line. Oliver protects the rim for the Wolf Pack, totaling a league-best 68 blocks on the year, and Drew leads Nevada with 33 steals.
Head coach Eric Musselman is in his second season, compiling an overall mark of 44-20 over that span, including a 2-1 mark against Utah State.
Last Time Against Nevada
LOGAN, Utah – Freshman Koby McEwen provided the offense for Utah State and fellow freshman Sam Merrill played lock-down defense on the Mountain West’s leading scorer, helping the Aggies defeat league-leading Nevada, 74-57, on Feb. 1, at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.
McEwen scored a game-high 26 points, including 19 in the second half alone, to go along with six rebounds, as Utah State snapped the Wolf Pack’s two-game winning streak.
Merrill added 13 points, five rebounds and four assists, but it was his presence on the defensive end of the court that paid huge dividends for the Aggies. The native of Bountiful, Utah, was given the task of defending Nevada’s Marcus Marshall, who came into the game averaging a MW-best 21.1 points per game. However, he finished with a season-low two points – the first time he’s been held under double figures this season – on 1-of-12 shooting from the field.
Last Time Against Nevada in Reno
RENO, Nev. - Utah State went into the half with a 35-28 lead, but encountered a second-half lull and ultimately lost on the road at Nevada on Feb. 26, 2016, 73-68.
The Aggies shot 41.9 percent (13-of-31) from the floor in the first half, compared to 34.6 percent (9-of-26) by Nevada, and forced 11 Wolf Pack turnovers en route to the 35-28 advantage going into the break. However, Nevada came out as a different team in the second half, shooting 58.1 percent (18-of-31) from the floor and committing just four turnovers while Utah State shot 34.4 percent (11-of-32) over the final 20 minutes.
Overall, Utah State shot 38.1 percent (24-of-63) on the night, 27.3 percent (6-of-22) from behind the 3-point line and a season-high 93.3 percent (14-of-15) from the free throw line, including a flawless 9-of-9 during the second half. Nevada wrapped up its night, shooting 47.4 percent (27-of-57) from the floor, 30.8 percent (4-of-13) from behind the 3-point line and 75.0 percent (15-of-20) from the charity stripe.
Mountain West Assist Leaders
Utah State is the only team in the Mountain West with three players ranked among the top-10 in assists per game in league games in freshman guard Sam Merrill (3.5, third), freshman guard Koby McEwen (2.9, ninth) and senior wing Jalen Moore (2.7, 10th).
Tim Duryea Coach’s Show
Utah State head coach Tim Duryea will join Al Lewis on most Mondays throughout the men’s basketball season from 6:05 to 7 p.m. The next show is scheduled for Monday, Feb. 20, at the Pizza Pie Cafe on 1400 North.
Basketball Coach’s Luncheon
Utah State men’s basketball will host seven coach’s luncheons this season, hosted by Aggies Unlimited. The next luncheon is scheduled for Monday, Feb. 27, and will be held in the West Stadium Center in Maverik Stadium.
Utah State continues its two-game road trip at San José State on Wednesday, Feb. 22, at 8 p.m. (MT). The game can be heard live on KVNU with Al Lewis providing play-by-play. Fans can also watch the game on the Mountain West Network, online at utahstateaggies.com/videos.
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