Lobos travel to Las Vegas in search of redemption

New Mexico will try to get back to a winning record with a victory at UNLV on Tuesday night. Scott Forman/The Lobo Lair

Isabel Gonzalez

New Mexico at UNLV
8pm MT at Thomas & Mack Center
CBS Sports Network

When UNLV visited Albuquerque on Jan. 8, the Rebels left The Pit with an 80-69 victory over New Mexico. This Tuesday, the Lobos are traveling to Las Vegas in search of a different result.

That particular loss was painful for the Lobos, who were just coming from a win against the then No. 5/6 Nevada. It also was the first of a three-game losing skid. New Mexico broke that streak on Saturday with an 83-53 win over the Wyoming Cowboys.

Redshirt junior Carlton Bragg said he and his teammates still had a bad taste in their mouth but that it was a good experience to overcome obstacles together.

“It’s just adversity,” he said. “You have seen these young men grow everyday, and that’s the best part about it.”

Six Lobos saw double digits with Bragg leading with 16 points, five rebounds, three blocks and two steals. Freshman point guard Drue Drinnon did not suit up for that game due to showing some concussion symptoms from a fall that happened during practice earlier that week. 

Bragg is one of three Lobo players who are averaging double digits. He is recording 10.6 points per game, Vance Jackson has 12.6 and Anthony Mathis leads everyone with 15.9 points per game. 

The Rebels are 10-7 overall and 4-1 in the conference. This is the program’s first 4-1 start in Mountain West conference in seven years. They’ve had a strong season at home with a 7-3 record.

Their only conference loss came from the Air Force Falcons last Wednesday. The team bounced back with a 94-56 win over San Jose State on Saturday. This was their largest margin of victory since a 106-66 victory over Florida A&M during last season’s opener. Joel Ntambwe led his team with 16 points. This was his 10th straight game with double digits. Overall, senior guard Kris Clyburn leads the team in scoring averaging 13.4 points per game. 

UNLV’s strength has been rebounds. The Rebels have out-rebounded their opponents in 16 of their 17 games this season.