Nevada Hands Hawai’i Their First Loss of the Season

Sheriff Drammeh received a flagrant one in the second half, halting any positive momentum had against Nevada. (Source: Star Advertiser) (Header: Nevada Athletics)

HONOLULU — On a night where the ball just wasn’t bouncing their way, the Hawai’i Warriors fell to the Nevada Wolf Pack late Friday night, 67-54.

Only one Hawai’i player finished with double digits, and it came from guard Brocke Stepeau off the bench. Leland Green finished with nine points, and forwards Mike Thomas and Gibson Johnson both contributed eight points, respectively.

Caleb Martin led the Wolf Pack with 22 points and six rebounds, while brother Cody Martin added 16 points, seven rebounds, and three blocks in the win.

The Warriors could never get a good lead going at all in this game, as their dismal shooting kept them from gaining any traction on the Wolf Pack. Hawai’i bricked six in a row at one point mid-way through the first half.

Inside the Stan Sheriff Center, Hawai’i hasn’t shot well from beyond the arc. In their last three games, all a part of the Outrigger Hotels Rainbow Classic, they shot just 20%, 28.6%, and 27.3% from three point range.

On Friday night, the Warriors shot just 18.8%.

As a team, they were 3-for-16 from downtown, and it didn’t help that forward Jack Purchase went 0-for-5 by himself.

From the charity stripe this season, Hawai’i has not converted over 67% in a game. Against Nevada, they converted just 52.4% of their free throws. They were 11-21 as a team.

Hawai’i found themselves down 34-24 to Nevada at the break, and head coach Eran Ganot had this to say about his team at the half.

“We’re playing on our heels.  We did a good job defensively for a stretch, but we need to score.”

The Warriors were within a 46-38 margin with about 10 minutes left in the game, and pulled within four soon after. The big swing of the game that lost all the momentum for Hawai’i was when Sheriff Drammeh was called for a flagrant one.

After the flagrant call, Hawai’i just couldn’t close the gap and the game was 61-47 with 1:46 left.

They ended the game on a 7-3 run.

Coach Eran Ganot on his team’s first loss of the season and what is to come for the Warriors. “We can’t get intimidated at this level.  Our offense really hurt us today. We have a quick turnaround play on Monday, then travel to Utah.”

Hawai’i will play the Adams State Grizzlies on Monday at home, and then travel for their first road game against the Utah Utes on December 2nd.

– T. Zust