FSM Essential Recap: UNLV vs Boise State – Game 27

UNLV Runnin’ Rebels (16-11, 5-10 MWC) | Boise State Broncos (21-6, 11-3)

Franchise Sports Media


The Runnin’ Rebels dropped their third straight game, as they were defeated by the Boise State Broncos 73-69, falling to 5-10 in MWC play.

The UNLV vs Boise State recap.

UNLV vs Boise State EJ Harckless
Photo Credit: Kyla LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

The UNLV’s men’s basketball team put up a huge fight on the road, but the Rebels fell to the Boise State Broncos in a nail-biter 73-69. They’ve now lost three games in a row, falling to 5-10 in the Mountain West Conference play. UNLV has now lost seven consecutive matchups against the Broncos since 2020.

It was one of the toughest matchups of the year for the Runnin’ Rebels, as Boise State featured one of the top defenses in the leauge. The Broncos harassed the Rebels all game long, which turned into 15 UNLV turnovers and 11 of those Runnin’ Rebels came in the first half.UNLV vs Boise State in Boise, Idaho.

Boise State improved to 21-6 and is now right behind San Diego State at the top of the MWC standings, just a game back of first place at 11-3.

UNLV vs Boise State first half.

UNLV vs Boise State Luis Rodriguez
Photo Credit: Kyla LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

Marcus Shaver Jr. had 19 points, five rebounds, and four steals. Max Rice had 17 points while going 6-for-11 from the floor, 2-for-5 from distance, and 3-for-5 from the free throw line, as well as eight rebounds. Naje Smith shot 4-for-6 from the field and 5-for-5 from the free-throw line to finish with 13 points.

It was also the first career start for Shane Nowell, as UNLV was without Luis Rodriguez and Eli Parquet. Nowell played his part in this one, as he totaled 14 points on 3-for-7 from beyond the arc, including a crucial corner three Nowell made that brought the game within two in the final 11 seconds of game time. Nowell also made strides on defense, as he covered both Shaver on the perimeter and Tyson Degenhart in the post throughout the game.

With the squad missing some crucial pieces, Jackie Johnson made his first appearance for the Rebels since January 21st and scored his first bucket since January 17th at Utah State. Johnson contributed seven points on 3-for-5 from the field.

The Rebels brought the fight on the road in Boise, but nobody was battling harder than David Muoka, who already had four blocks at halftime. Muoka finished the game with five blocks, six points, and five rebounds. Muoka also finished +7 in 22 minutes, while Victor Iwuakor was -11 in 18 minutes.

The intensity and the intent were there for UNLV, but their star players didn’t show up. EJ Harkless totaled just 14 points (4-for-11 FGs, 1-for-5 3s), five rebounds, and two steals. At the same time, Keshon Gilbert had a rough outing with six points and five turnovers. 

The Rebels had themselves some nice stretches as they clamped down on Boise State and allowed zero points through four minutes of gameplay. However, they let their foot off the gas, and the Broncos closed the first half with a 7-0 run. Boise State turned UNLV’s 11 turnovers in the first half into 14 points. 

UNLV vs Boise State end of the first half.

UNLV hung around, but they nearly went four minutes without scoring until Jordan McCabe swished a transition 3, forcing Boise State into a timeout. Boise’s defense smothered the Rebels, but they didn’t go down without a fight.

UNLV vs Boise State start of the second half.

UNLV vs Boise State DJ Hall
Photo Credit: Kyla LaCoste/Franchise Sports Media

Despite the loss, the Rebels held their own defensively. They held Boise State to 25 percent (4-for-16) from three, forcing the Broncos to commit 11 turnovers.

UNLV, on the other hand, put on a show from distance, as they shot 42.3 percent (11-for-26). However, The Rebels struggled from the charity stripe, totaling 66.7 percent (10-for-15). 

Both squads were battling with referees all night, as the two teams combined for 35 fouls total, with UNLV having 20 of them. This game was as close as it could’ve ever been, and it was arguably the officials who dictated the outcome of this matchup. 

UNLV vs Boise State final score 73-69

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


The Runnin’ Rebels will take on Air Force Friday, February 24th, at 6:30 pm PT. The game will be available on CBS Sports Network.


-Jake Ideguchi-Furukawa – Franchise Sports Media

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