Loss to Fresno makes
Nevada a must-win

By Jason Kaneshiro

As Carl English's jumper scraped off the front of the rim to seal Hawaii's loss to Fresno State on Thursday, the Rainbows saw their margin for error in the Western Athletic Conference title race vanish.

Hawaii completes its 11-day road trip by facing Nevada today in Reno with both teams needing a win to maintain contact with the league leaders. The home team has won each of the last four regular-season meetings between the teams.


"That's been a tough place for us, we haven't won there yet," UH coach Riley Wallace said.

Hawaii matched its conference loss total of last season with Thursday's 56-55 heartbreaker in Fresno to drop to 11-4 overall and 4-3 in the WAC. The Wolf Pack defeated San Jose State 86-59 to tie the Rainbows for third place in the conference.

First-place Fresno State (7-1) hosts San Jose State (1-5) today. Southern Methodist (3-3) plays at Tulsa (4-2) in another battle that could shake up the standings.

The last time the Rainbows ventured into the Lawlor Events Center, they left with a 79-69 loss last March. A repeat would give the Rainbows their first three-game losing streak in more than two years.

Nevada presents a guard-oriented attack led by sophomore guard Kirk Snyder, Garry Hill-Thomas and Terrance Green. The Wolf Pack's tallest starter is 6-foot-9 forward Sean Paul.

Snyder leads Nevada in three statistical categories, with 16.0 points, 7.6 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game. The 6-foot-6 sophomore has posted double-figure point totals in 17 consecutive games and recorded his sixth double-double of the season Thursday with 20 points and 11 rebounds against San Jose State.

Hill-Thomas is second on the team in scoring with 11.7 points. Green is coming off a 20-point night against San Jose State. Junior guard Todd Okeson is among the WAC's top 3-point shooters. He is 39-for-70 (56 percent) from beyond the arc this season.

English led Hawaii with 19 points against Fresno State and remains second in the WAC with 19.4 points per game. The Rainbows will need more production out of their post players to halt their skid after forward Phil Martin and center Haim Shimonovich combined for five points against Fresno State.

Short shots: Hawaii and Nevada last met in last year's WAC Tournament semifinals, with UH prevailing 90-68 en route to winning the conference title. ... English needs 57 points to become the 10th men's player to score 1,000 points in a UH career. The junior is 25 points away from passing Trevor Ruffin (967) on the school's all-time scoring list. ... Nevada forward Kevinn Pinkney (7.3 ppg, 6.2 rpg) missed Thursday's game with a thigh contusion and is expected to sit out today's game. UH reports no injuries. ... Hawaii is scheduled to return to Honolulu at 12:23 p.m. tomorrow aboard United flight 67.

Hawaii at Nevada

When: Today, 5 p.m.
Where: Lawlor Events Center
Radio: Live, 1420-AM

UH Athletics

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