FRESNO, Calif. — Marcelus Kemp scored 25 points and JaVale McGee added 23 points and 14 rebounds as Nevada defeated Fresno State 76-63 on Saturday night to clinch a share of the Western Athletic Conference title.
Nevada (20-10 overall, 12-4 WAC) finished the regular season in a four-way tie with Boise State, Utah State and New Mexico State atop the WAC standings.
After leading by five points at halftime, the Wolf Pack pulled away early in the second half when Kemp scored seven points on consecutive possessions, including a four-point play.
Hector Hernandez had 15 points for Fresno State (13-18, 5-11), which shot 33.3 percent from the field, compared to Nevada
Kevin Bell added 12 points, 10 rebounds and five assists for the Bulldogs, who said goodbye to six seniors playing their final home game at the Save Mart Center.
It was the fifth straight WAC regular-season title for Nevada, which will be the No. 2 seed at next week
Nevada and Fresno State, the No. 7 seed, will face off again Thursday in the first round of the WAC tournament.
Fresno State trailed by 10 points early in the second half before closing to within 46-43 on Eddie Miller
Kemp answered with a 3-pointer, then hit another on Nevada
Nevada maintained at least an eight-point lead for the rest of the game.
The Wolf Pack led 36-31 at halftime when Brandon Fields banked in a 3-pointer at the buzzer.
Freshman Ned Golubovic kept Fresno State within striking distance by scoring 11 of the Bulldogs
The 6-foot-8 Golubovic hit a 3-pointer with 6:03 left, then began taking the ball inside against the 7-foot McGee. Golubovic scored all 11 of his points during the surge.
NEW MEXICO STATE 106, HAWAII 71: At Las Cruces, N.M., it was a night to remember for New Mexico State and its seniors, especially Justin Hawkins.
Hawkins scored a career-high 37 points as the Aggies beat Hawaii 106-71 Saturday night to gain a share of its first Western Athletic Conference basketball title.
New Mexico State (19-13) wound up in a four-way tie for the WAC crown with Boise State, Nevada and Utah State — all with 12-4 conference records.