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Boise State drops a tough game down in Reno, Nevada

With only four games left in the Mountain West regular season, the Broncos looked to remain in contention for the regular season crown.

NCAA Basketball: Boise State at Nevada Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports

Broncos 77, Wolf Pack 85

In a crucial battle for first place in the Mountain West Conference, Boise State needed to escape Reno with a with against the Wolf Pack. A win would put either team in a tie for first place with Colorado State. A loss would send that team to third.

The game started fast for Nevada as Jordan Caroline scored six of the Wolf Pack’s first nine points. The bleeding would end on a James Reid three. That, in turn, would spark a run for Boise State that would see nothing but threes in for the Broncos and they would tie early on 9-9.

For the rest of the first half, neither team would ever lead by more than six.

Marcus Marshall would join the three parade as his shots from beyond the arc would just seem to fall in. But as the Wolf Pack would start to make their move to pull away, the Broncos would also find ways to claw back and keep it close. As Nevada pulled ahead to a five point lead, 18-13, Chandler Hutchison would hit a clutch three and Zach Haney would follow that up with a jumper to tie the game 18-18 with 10:34 to go in the game.

The teams would proceed to go back and forth throughout the first half knotting up two more times. The Broncos would would take a 10-0 run to end the half, and take a lead, 41-33. The last shot was a controversial one as a last-second put-back by Nick Duncan was initially reviewed, and waived off, by the Mountain West refs giving a shot-clock violation to Duncan. During the intermission they replayed the video again and found that the ball had touched the rim, resetting the clock before Duncan’s shot, and thus awarding him the points.

Though buoyed by an eight point lead to start the second half, the Broncos made costly errors that lead to easy points for the Wolf Pack. Two early fouls by David Wacker and Chandler Hutchison would vaporize a 10 point lead and get the Wolf Pack within five, 43-38.

The teams would trade blows throughout the second half, tying each other three times. Nevada took the lead, for good, on a Marcus Marshal free throw (65-64) and Nevada would not look back.

Nick Duncan has, seemingly, gotten over his cold streak as he was 5-6 from behind the arc. Duncan had 19 points (tied for most for the Broncos) and seven rebounds. Chandler Hutchison also had 19 points, added six rebounds, and eight assists. Paris Austin had his lowest scoring output in a while with only nine points but also had nine assists. Justinian Jessup has continued his slump with zero points for the Broncos.

Nevada’s Marcus Marshall lead all scorers with 26 points, notched four rebounds, and eight assists. Cameron Oliver had the only double-double in the game with 21 points and 11 rebounds.

The loss drops the Broncos to 10-5 in conference and third place in the Mountain West Conference standings. The Broncos next have the San Jose State Spartans at Taco Bell Arena this Saturday at 2 p.m.