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Lady Rebels off to best conference start in 29 years with latest win

A streaking UNLV Lady Rebel team has now run its latest string of wins to six straight, one away from tying a season-high.

The Lady Rebels wrapped up a road victory over the San Jose State Spartans, 84-58, Wednesday, Jan. 11 from the Provident Credit Union Event Center. UNLV is now 7-0 this season when scoring 69 points or more.

This year’s Lady Rebel group is now 15-2 on the year and 5-0 in the conference for the first time since the 1993-94 season. Currently, the team holds onto the top spot in the Mountain West. San Jose State marked the end of a three-game undefeated road trip for UNLV as it improved to 5-2 on the road this year.

Now, the team will head back home for two games beginning with a contest against the New Mexico Lobos. That matchup will be played Saturday, Jan. 14 from the Cox Pavilion with tip-off slated for 6 p.m.

A pair of third quarter runs turned the game on its ear for the Lady Rebels. It began with a 6-0 run that pushed a nine-point halftime lead to 15. Finally, it was a 10-0 run to extend the lead to 19 just before the third quarter buzzer.

Ultimately, it was a 12-0 run over the last 3:19 that put UNLV in the driver’s seat for good.

The lead swelled to 26 points in the final 12-minutes with the Lady Rebels winning by that final margin.

In the first quarter, UNLV battled back using a 13-4 run as the culprit. That run allowed the Lady Rebels to sustain a scoreless drought of nearly four minutes in the second quarter. While the team struggled on offense, the defense held the Spartans without a point for the first 5:39 of the second quarter.

Senior guard Essence Booker started and rewarded La Rocque and company with a season-high 22 points on an extremely efficient 9-of-13 from the field. Booker didn’t score her second field goal of the game until the 7:27-mark of the third quarter. That sparked six straight points for her on the way to 10 points for the game. She polished off her performance with eight points in the final quarter on a perfect 4-of-4.

Junior center Desi-Rae Young added 15 points on 7-of-9 shooting to go along with 11 rebounds. She now has nine double-doubles on the year and her third straight.

The reigning Mountain West Player of the Year is averaging 17.9 points per game and 10.4 rebounds per contest.

As a team, UNLV shot 56% from the field while holding San Jose State to just 38% on the other end.

Sophomore guard Alyssa Durazo-Frescas came out firing to the tune of nine straight points for the Lady Rebels to open the game on a perfect 3-for-3 from three-point range. She finished with 14 points and four of the team’s seven made threes.

Fellow sophomore Alyssa Brown added 11 points, five rebounds and five assists in her first start since Dec. 11 and just her third start of the year. When she starts, Brown is averaging 11.7 points per game to go along with 8.3 rebounds per outing.


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