FSM Essential Recap: UNLV vs Life Pacific – Game 7

UNLV Runnin’ Rebels (7-0 / 0-0)  | Life Pacific Warriors (7-2 / 1-0)

Franchise Sports Media


UNLV handled Life Pacific 126-54 as all 15 Rebels got their to chance to run, with Karl Jones being the main star.


UNLV vs Life Pacific
Photo Credit: Trisha LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

UNLV’s Isaiah Cottrell was in for the game against Life Pacific. The transfer from West Virginia averaged 4.2 points per game last season. Cottrell returned from the foot injury he suffered during the Canada trip.

UNLV continued to use its starting lineup of Keshon Gilbert, E.J. Harkless, Eli Parquet, Luis Rodriguez, and David Muoka. They are the same starters as the previous six games.

Muoka started the game off with a putback layup off an offensive rebound. Daniel Hernandez hit a three to put Life Pacific on the board and in the lead 3-2. Gilbert hit a three in response

Gilbert then tried to lob it up to Parquet, but he wasn’t able to grab it fully and ended up laying it in. Parquet made up for it on the next possession in transition with a dunk. Rodriguez stole a pass and went down for another dunk as UNLV pulled ahead by six to lead 14-8.

UNLV then goes on a quick 8-4 run, starting with Parquet as he drove baseline and dunked it home. Gilbert got another steal and threw down a highlight reel dunk, and Gilbert threw up a no-look lob to Muoka, who slammed it down. Jackie Johnson III got things going for himself with a tough layup, 22-12 advantage UNLV.

Harkless then went on a scoring run. He got his first points from beyond the arc and then shrugged off Ethan Galang for another score, this time inside. Next, Pedro Leal-Cruz and Harkless traded buckets. To finish, Harkless nabbed the offensive rebound and put it back in.

Off a forced turnover, Parquet got the dunk. Jordan McCabe had a confidence-boosting game as he got a three. He then dumped it off to Karl Jones, who threw down a monster jam for two. Rodriguez hit a three, and UNLV went up by 25, 46-21, capping off a 24-9 run. Harkless already had nine points and five rebounds. At the same time, Parquet and Gilbert both had eight points.

Cottrell checked in for the first time, but it took him a while to get acclimated and put up any box score stats. Then, the more game-ready Shane Nowell checked in for the first time and got to work with a floater inside. Next, Johnson III and Kyler Villareal traded threes, and Israel Sylvester scored the jumper over Nowell.


At halftime, the score read, UNLV 65, Life Pacific 36. Some attendees had already left the building. The Rebels shot 65% (26-40) overall and 53.8% (7-13) from three. Life Pacific on the other hand was held to 40.6% (13-32) from the field and 36.4% (4-11) from three, along with 10 turnovers.


UNLV vs Life Pacific
Photo Credit: Trisha LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

Albert Matute started the half off with a three. Gilbert dished it off to Muoka for the two-handed flush. Muoka then cleaned up a Rodriguez miss for two. Rodriguez made up for that miss with a steal and a reverse jam for the highlights. He got another score in transition off another Life Pacific turnover. UNLV had opened the second half on a 12-3 run.

Gilbert, in transition, caught a pass in motion and sank a three to make it a 15-3 run. Then, Matute stopped Life Pacific’s drought with a two. Then, Jones, with back-to-back dunks, put UNLV up 44, which doubled the amount that Life Pacific had scored up to this point, 88-44.

Cottrell hadn’t done much in this blowout, but he drew a charge call on Kofi Aboagye. After that, the Rebels made back-to-back threes from McCabe and Webster, the latter receiving a flashy pass from the former, which got the crowd riled up for whatever was left of it.

Jones cleaned up a missed layup from Keyshawn Hall. Then Nowell made the extra pass to Johnson III, and he made the three to crack the century mark for UNLV as the score read 102-48 with a little more than eight minutes left to play.

McCabe kept it pouring with another three from Steph Curry’s range, Jones cleaned up back-to-back missed shots for scores inside, and Cameron Burist got a dunk, capping off a 26-4 run.

Cottrell finally scored his first official field goal from beyond the arc, and Nick Walters got his first division 1 points of his career off a drive and lay-in. Then he dimed Hall for the two-handed rim grazer.

Nothing else was worth noting as UNLV picked up win No. 7 of the season over NAIA Life Pacific 126-54. Nothing to take away from this game except a ton of fun. Good times were had by all, and the Rebels won by 72.


Runnin’ Takeaways


UNLV vs Life Pacific
Photo Credit: Trisha LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

It was a massive night for the bench players; Jones had 20 points on 10-12 overall, 12 rebounds, and three blocks. Johnson III had 14 points on 6-8 overall. McCabe had 12 points on 4-5 from three, eight assists, and two steals.

The starters also had their fun, with Gilbert finishing with 13 points on 2-3 from three, four assists, and two steals. Muoka put up 11 points on 5-6 overall, seven rebounds, and two blocks.

The only Life Pacific player worthy of note was Matute, with 13 points and two steals. But UNLV forced him to commit five turnovers. Life Pacific had 23 turnovers in total to the Rebels’ 11.

It was really fun to see Karl have that opportunity to go out, 20 points 12 rebounds, watching him have fun out there and he deserves it,” Kevin Kruger said after the game. “He’s working with everybody every day, so it was fun to be able to see him go out there and have fun like that.”

Don’t forget to go out and support the Runnin’ RebelsClick here to get your UNLV Runnin’ Rebels tickets! 


The Runnin’ Rebels will now travel to San Diego, California to play San Diego Saturday, December 3rd, at 7:00 pm. The game will be available to watch on the Mountain West Network.

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-Jake Ideguchi-Furukawa – Franchise Sports Media

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