for this game

Nevada holds off upset-minded Hawaii

Feb 4, 2007 - 5:37 AM RENO, Nevada (Ticker) -- Hawaii went 0-for-2 on replays and because of it lost a chance to pull off a major upset of Nevada.

Marcelus Kemp scored 23 points and No. 13 Nevada survived a pair of last-second video reviews to hold on for a 69-68 Western Athletic Conference victory over Hawaii.

Nick Fazekas added 21 points and 10 rebounds to lift the Wolf Pack (21-2, 9-1 WAC) to their ninth consecutive victory - but not before several anxious moments in final six seconds.

Ahmet Gueye appeared to give Hawaii a 70-69 lead as he heaved up a shot while falling on his backside with 5.8 seconds left.

Even though Fazekas had a firm hold of Gueye's shirt well before he attempted the shot, the officials ruled that the shot counted and were about to send Gueye to the foul line.

After a pair of lengthy reviews, the basket was waved off, giving Hawaii a final possession - and no free throws, since Nevada was under the limit.

"It took courage to get it right," Nevada coach Mark Fox said. "I had to fight for my team. Give the officials credit, it takes courage to get it right."

Still, Hawaii had two more chances chances to win it. Matt Gibson attempted a 3-pointer that was partially blocked by Dennis Ikovlev and deflected to Gueye, whose short jumper bounced off the rim.

P.J. Owsley rebounded the miss and banked it home, but replays showed time had expired just before the ball left his hand.

"We dodged a bullet," Kemp said.

"It was not very good. We didn't play very well in any way," Fazekas said. "Like Marcelus said, we dodged a bullet."

Nevada led by as many as 10 points in the first half and carried a 40-33 lead into intermission. The Wolf Pack stretched the lead to 51-41 behind Kemp, who hit a pair of 3-pointers and scored his team's first 11 points of the second half.

"Marcelus Kemp took over the game and was really in the zone when it was important and I thought that really was the difference in the game," Warriors coach Riley Wallace said.

Kemp's third 3-pointer - and 14th point - of the half made it 54-45, but Hawaii answered with a 14-5 run and finally moved into a tie at 59-59 on Gibson's jumper with 7 1/2 minutes left.

Four free throws by Fazekas and a dunk by Kemp restored a four-point lead for Nevada, and Hawaii could never catch up. Kemp hit four 3-pointers and was 7-of-12 from the field in his 12th 20-point game of the season.

Nevada enjoyed a huge edge at the line, converting 20-of-21 compared to 2-of-5 for Hawaii.

"That is how you win games," Fazekas said. "They are free baskets. We took advantage and got 20 of 21 shots."

"It was about the only thing that really worked," Fox said.

Gueye scored 21 points on 10-of-15 shooting for Hawaii (13-10, 4-6), which had its three-game winning streak snapped.