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Lady Rebels rebound on road with win over Falcons

Updated: Jan 7, 2022

The UNLV Lady Rebels are 12-1 after a loss under the tenure of head coach Lindy La Rocque following the team’s latest win.


UNLV beat Air Force, 83-67, Thursday, Jan. 6 from Clune Arena in Colorado.


It’s the seventh time the team has scored 80 or more points this season.


“I don’t know if I even knew that [12-1 after a loss] stat, that’s pretty cool,” La Rocque said. “I think whenever we kind of have a setback, we make a conscious effort to not pile it on [...] Our team really wanted this one bad.”


The Lady Rebels are now 5-2 on the road this season after this two-game game road trip.


With an 11-4 overall record and 3-1 conference mark, UNLV is currently third in the Mountain West, a half game back of first place.


A home date against Boise State is next for the team, a week from now.


“We’ve been some road warriors for the last 10 days,” La Rocque said. “So between my voice and [the team’s] legs and bodies, we just need a little bit of rest. We’re fortunate to have played all of our games to this point unlike a lot of other people across the country.”


The Broncos will enter the Cox Pavilion, Thursday, Jan. 13 with tipoff set for 6:30 p.m.


UNLV built a lead as large as 30 points in the final quarter of the game but it came after a rough shooting first quarter.


“We really wanted to come out and be aggressive,” La Rocque said. “And I think we were really aggressive. We settled for a couple of pull-ups, maybe we were just a little bit rushed. I was actually pretty happy with the aggressiveness we were playing with, we just had to settle down.”


After the first 10 minutes of play, the Lady Rebels had only made four of their 16 attempts from the field.


That first quarter included a scoring drought of over four minutes and a field goal-less drought of more than two.


For the next thirty minutes, it was pure domination from the road team, outscoring Air Force 71-51 the rest of the way.


“We’re in league play now,” La Rocque said. “So it’s a lot of the same coaches, people doing the same things, people know each other really well and we see each other play a lot.”


That scoring stretch was highlighted by a 25-10 second quarter where UNLV built a lead as large as 11 behind a 12-2 run late in the frame.


The lead grew to 17 in the third quarter but would be cut down to seven after the Falcons went on a 10-0 run.


During that stretch, UNLV committed five straight turnovers at one point. By the end of the game, the team committed twice as many turnovers as Air Force.


In every other aspect of the game, the Lady Rebels dominated.


“That’s where I think, if anything, we were a little disappointed in ourselves in that first quarter,,” La Rocque said. “We gave up 16 points there in the first quarter and that’s kind of been unlike us in the last couple of games.


“We talked about it at the quarter-break and we came out and had a totally different intention and purpose and held that team to 10 points which is more what we’re capable of. Our defense is really where we show our toughness.”


UNLV outrebounded Air Force 45-29 and outscored the Falcons 42-22 in the paint.


In addition, the Lady Rebels outshot the home team 49% to 40% from the field and made seven of their 12 three-point attempts while holding their opponents to 6-of-22.


Four players scored in double figures for La Rocque’s club, led by 17 points from junior guard Essence Booker.


“We had some great talks and meetings in the last couple of days,” La Rocque said. “For her, it’s just kind of getting out of her own head and hooping and having fun. Let me worry about turnovers or missed shots or anything because I think some of these young people can be their own best defender.”


Booker shot 5-of-11 from the floor and added a perfect 6-for-6 from the free throw line. She also added four rebounds and four assists.


Sophomore duo Desi-Rae Young and Nneka Obiazor combined to score 28 points on 11-of-17 from the field to go with 21 rebounds.


Freshman guard Alyssa Durazo-Frescas added 13 points on a perfect 5-for-5 from the field including three made three-pointers.

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