RENO, Nev. – Coming out of a timeout with just 31 seconds on the clock in overtime and the game tied at 66-66, Kenan Blackshear stood at the top of the key waiting for the play that was drawn up to develop. With the clock winding down, Blackshear whipped a pass to Tre Coleman with just 16 seconds left. Coleman received the pass near the right elbow, drove left into the chest of his defender and put up a soft floater in the paint that dropped through the net, giving the Nevada Men’s Basketball team a 68-66 lead with 12 seconds remaining, and ultimately propelling the Pack to a historical victory over No. 24 San Diego State in front of a sold out crowd at Lawlor Events Center.
The victory marked the first time in program history that the Pack defeated ranked opponents in consecutive contests, as they beat No. 22 Utah State on Tuesday before earning the impressive win over the 24th ranked Aztecs Friday night.
Nevada also made history, as Friday night’s win was the Pack’s third victory over a ranked opponent this season, marking the most wins over AP ranked teams in a single season in program history.
Since the commencing of the 2022-23 season, Nevada has earned five victories over ranked opponents. In Nevada’s entire Division I program history prior to last season, the Pack had just 10 combined ranked victories.
Nevada was exceptional on the defensive end of the court in the victory over the Aztecs, limiting San Diego State to just 66 points on 40.8 percent shooting from the field, including an abysmal clip of 15.8 percent from behind the arc, marking their worst 3-point field goal percentage in a game this season.
Offensively, Nevada recorded 14 assists on 24 made field goals, and the Pack scored 30 points in the paint. Nevada also tallied 15 second chance points in the game.
Individually, Blackshear led the way for the Pack, scoring 22 points on 8-15 shooting from the field, while also pulling down four boards and recording two steals. Blackshear was sensational in the second half and in overtime, as he scored 18 of his 22 points over the final 25 minutes of the game, including pouring in eight points on 3-3 shooting in overtime.
Jarod Lucas finished second on the team in scoring, dropping 15 points on 4-9 shooting from the field, including 2-4 from behind the arc. Lucas also grabbed five rebounds, dished out two assists, and tallied one steal.
Nick Davidson had another stellar performance for Nevada, as he scored 14 points on 6-10 shooting and pulled down five rebounds. Davidson was also impressive on the defensive end of the court, as he served as the primary defender on San Diego State superstar Jaedon LeDee.
Coleman did not have his best offensive game; however, he completed the contest with seven points, none bigger than the bucket to put Nevada ahead with 12 seconds remaining. Coleman also dished out four assists, grabbed three rebounds, and recorded two steals.
Daniel Foster was tremendous off the bench for the second consecutive game, as he pulled down a team-high six rebounds, four of which came on the offensive glass, in addition to dishing out four assists.
Freshman guard Tyler Rolison also provided a strong boost off the bench for Nevada, scoring four points on 2-3 shooting, while dishing out two assists, pulling down two rebounds, and recording two steals.
After getting dismantled on the glass in the first matchup against San Diego State, Nevada outrebounded the Aztecs 34-32, while limiting SDSU to just six offensive boards in the game.
Despite the contest being close from start to finish, Nevada maintained a lead for 35 minutes and 14 seconds throughout the game, while in turn trailing for just four minutes and 50 seconds.
Lucas started off the game in exceptional fashion, draining a 3-pointer on the Pack’s first possession of the game to give Nevada a 3-0 advantage 15 seconds into the contest.
Just under a minute later, Lucas buried another triple, as the Pack built a 6-0 lead at the 18:46 mark.
The Aztecs finally got on the board with 17:21 remaining in the period, as they splashed a 3-pointer to cut the Pack’s lead down to three points.
The defensive battle persisted, with neither team scoring for the next two minutes of game time, before Blackshear scored his first bucket of the night, a layup in the paint.
Nevada expanded their lead up to seven points at the 12:57 mark after Foster knocked down a pair of free throws, marking the largest lead of the contest by either team.
The Aztecs scored back-to-back buckets, trimming Nevada’s lead to 10-7 nearly halfway through the first period.
Davidson responded for the Pack, scoring his first bucket of the night to push Nevada’s lead up to five points; but, San Diego State quickly scored on the other end and the Pack found themselves leading 12-9 with 9:49 remaining until halftime.
After the two squads traded buckets, Coleman buried a 3-pointer off a perfect pass from Lucas in transition, as Nevada took a 17-11 lead with 7:15 to go in the period.
The scoring picked up over the remainder of the first half, and Nevada went on to take a 30-27 lead into halftime.
The Aztecs commenced the scoring in the second half, as LeDee hit a jump shot 13 seconds into the period to cut the Pack’s lead down to just one point.
Nevada responded with three consecutive points, as K.J. Hymes made a lone free throw before Davidson pulled down an offensive rebound and finished at the rim, giving Nevada a 34-31 lead at the 17:48 mark.
The back and forth play continued, as Nevada maintained its lead, but was unable to create any separation from the Aztecs.
San Diego State tied up the contest at 46-46 with 6:46 remaining, marking the first time the game was tied since it was 0-0.
Blackshear knocked down a pair of free throws 29 seconds later, as the Pack retook the lead.
San Diego State responded with a layup to tie the game at 48-48; but, Davidson finished a layup of his own on the Pack’s next offensive possession, as Nevada held a 50-48 advantage with 5:41 to go.
Just over a minute later, a pair of free throws from San Diego State evened up the score at 50 points apiece.
Shortly after, the Aztecs took their first lead of the game, as they held a 53-52 advantage over the Pack with 3:47 left in the second half.
Lucas knocked down a lone free throw to tie up the game; however, San Diego State managed to take a three-point lead with 1:37 remaining.
Late in the game and trailing by three, the largest deficit that Nevada had faced all evening, Coleman was fouled and calmly knocked down two free throws to bring the Pack within one point of the Aztecs with 1:14 left in the half.
The two squads then traded free throws, as Nevada found themselves trailing by one point with 36 seconds left.
The Pack fouled LeDee, and he made one of two shots at the line to put San Diego State ahead 60-58 with just 24 seconds on the clock.
Nevada called a timeout; and, out of the timeout, Blackshear took a contested mid-range jumper with 11 seconds left that came up short; however, Davidson corralled the offensive rebound in a scramble and proceeded to finish a layup while being fouled to tie the game up with just five seconds remaining. Davidson missed the free throw; but, the Pack got a huge stop on defense, and the two teams required overtime to determine the winner.
The Aztecs came out on fire to start the overtime period, scoring four points in the first minute and eight seconds to build a four-point lead over Nevada with 3:52 on the clock.
Trailing by four and in desperate need of a bucket, Foster made a beautiful pass to Blackshear who finished a layup in the paint to bring Nevada within two points of San Diego State with 3:37 to go.
On the Pack’s next defensive possession, Coleman made an exceptional play, intercepting a pass and pushing the ball up the court in transition before finding a cutting Blackshear who finished a difficult layup at the rim to tie the game at 64-64 with just over three minutes left.
Nevada got another defensive stop, and Blackshear came down and drilled a mid-range jumper, recapturing the lead for the Pack, as they took a 66-64 advantage with 2:21 remaining.
The Aztecs evened up the game at 66-66 with two free throws at the 2:02 mark.
The two squads went scoreless for the next minute and a half, and, after a huge defensive stop from Nevada, the Pack took a timeout with 31 seconds left, as they had the opportunity to take the lead.
Coleman made a spectacular play out of the timeout, hitting the contested floater over his defender to give Nevada a 68-66 lead with just 12 seconds on the clock.
San Diego State came down with one final chance to tie or win the game; but, Foster played exceptional defense on the final possession and forced SDSU guard Darrion Trammell into a difficult contested 3-pointer that came up short. Blackshear corralled the rebound and was fouled with just 0.3 seconds on the clock. He knocked down both free throws, as Nevada went on to make history and defeat the Aztecs by a final score of 70-66.
Nevada outscored San Diego State in the paint, 30-22.
The Pack pulled down 11 offensive rebounds and scored 15 second chance points.
Nick Davidson completed the contest with a game-high plus/minus of +7 in a career-high 35 minutes of action.
Daniel Foster pulled down a team-high six boards, four of which were offensive rebounds.
Nevada set a program record by earning their third ranked win of the season, marking the most victories over ranked opponents in a single season in Nevada Basketball history.
Nevada held San Diego State to a season low three made 3-pointers on their worst clip from behind the arc in a contest this season (15.8%).
San Diego State’s six offensive boards marked their second lowest offensive rebounding total in a contest this season.
Nevada will return to the court on Tuesday, as they are set to host #25 New Mexico at Lawlor Events Center with tip off slated for 8 p.m.
Follow The Pack
Follow Nevada Men’s Basketball on social media at @NevadaHoops (X), @nevadahoops (Instagram), and on Facebook at @NevadaMBB