UNLV holds off WyomingMar 9, 2012 - 8:30 AM Las Vegas, NV (Sports Network) - Mike Moser had 22 points and 14 rebounds and No. 20 UNLV shook off a dry spell in the second half to beat Wyoming, 56-48, and advance to the semifinals of the Mountain West Tournament.
Anthony Marshall added eight points and 10 rebounds and Chace Stanback also scored eight for the third-seeded Runnin' Rebels (26-7), who moved on to face second-seeded New Mexico in the semifinals Friday.
New Mexico topped Wyoming in the quarterfinals earlier Thursday.
Leonard Washington and Luke Martinez scored 11 points apiece to lead Wyoming (20-11).
The sixth-seeded Cowboys, after trailing 28-11 at halftime, made a push and were within six after Francisco Cruz's three-pointer with 1:01 remaining. But UNLV made four straight field goals after that for a 10-point lead and held on.
It was a far cry from how the game started. Wyoming went 3-for-24 in the first half (12.5 percent) and didn't score its 10th and 11th points until Washington hit a jumper to get the Cowboys within 26-11.
"I thought they were doing a great job defensively. I always thought they had the high level of intensity on their defense. That contributed a lot to missed shots," Wyoming coach Larry Shyatt said of the first-half struggles.
UNLV, playing in its home building at the Thomas & Mack Center, where it went undefeated (15-0) at home during the regular season for the first time in 20 years, led by as many as 22 points when Marshall's jumper made it 33-11 early in the second half.
But the Rebels went without a made field goal for a 10-minute stretch until Marshall's layup with around 4 1/2 minutes remaining. That gave them a 49-39 lead and they managed to hang on, improving to 3-0 versus Wyoming all-time in tournament play.
"At times this year, as you saw tonight, something happens to us. We get a big lead and we miss some shots and we just didn't guard the same way," said UNLV coach Dave Rice. "Yet very proud of our resiliency to come back and close it out at the end."
UNLV shot 40 percent in the first and second half. Wyoming, after its dismal first half, shot 41.2 percent in the second.
UNLV beat Wyoming, 74-63, on Saturday in the regular season finale for both teams. The Runnin' Rebels have won 10 straight over the Cowboys at the Thomas & Mack Center.
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