RENO, Nev. – After trailing the majority of the night, the Morehead State men’s basketball team trimmed the lead to 62-59 with just over four minutes to go, but couldn’t get over the hump as they fell 77-68 at Nevada in game two of the College Basketball Invitational Finals on Wednesday night.
The Eagles fall to 23-13 on the year, while Nevada improves to 23-14.
With both teams winning on their home court, the two teams will now square off in a winner-takes-all game three in Reno on Friday night at 9 p.m. ET.
“We didn’t hit enough shots tonight, but the bottom line is that they got one from us,” said Morehead State Coach Sean Woods. “Now we just need to come back on Friday and get one back. We know exactly what we are getting into with this environment now, we know how the game is going to be played. We just need to adjust and be ready to go,”
Morehead State went into the locker room at half trailing by six, 33-27, despite shooting just 28 percent from the floor and 0-of-10 from three-point range.
The Eagles did not hit a three-pointer until junior Corban Collins’ three from the corner with 6:34 to go in the game capped off an 8-0 road and trimmed the lead to 61-57. Senior Brent Arrington’s jumper later trimmed the lead to 62-59 with 4:26 to play and following a Nevada turnover, Morehead State had a chance to tie it, but Arrington’s three-point attempt would not fall.
Arrington later hit one of two free throws to pull within three, 63-60, with 3:35 to go, but Nevada answered with back-to-back three-pointers by Marqueze Coleman and D.J. Fenner to put the game away.
The Eagles struggled shooting the entire night. After shooting 28 percent in the first half, they did manage to shoot 46 percent in the second half and finished at 38 percent. But, they shot just 13-of-24 from the line and just 1-of-16 from three point range.
They entered tonight shooting 78 percent from the free throw line in the CBI.
Meanwhile, the Wolf Pack shot 5-of-6 from three-point range in the second half to withstand the Eagles’ run. They finished the game 6-of-10 from deep, 27-of-42 from the stripe, and 50 percent from the floor.
Morehead State managed to put up 25 more shots than Nevada due to their 17 offensive rebounds and 13 steals. They also forced 21 turnovers. But, they struggled to convert into points as they had just 16 points off turnovers and 12 second chance points. Nevada finished with 22 points off turnovers and 10 second chance points.
Arrington led the Eagles with 16 points, but shot just 7-of-20 from the floor. He was 0-of-4 from three point range. He also finished with a career-high eight steals, four assists, and three rebounds.
Junior DeJuan Marrero recorded his team-leading seventh double-double of the year with 13 points and 12 rebounds.
Fenner led the way for Nevada with 26 points. He was 7-of-12 from the floor, 2-of-3 from three, and 10-of-11 from the free throw line.