UNLV-California Preview

UNLV overcame Mike Moser’s absence to win its first road game of

the season, but it might need the junior forward for its next


The 21st-ranked Runnin’ Rebels seek a fifth consecutive win

Sunday when they visit a California team that’s eager to bounce

back from its first loss in seven games.

A re-aggravated hip injury forced Moser to sit out a game that

was specifically scheduled for him, a visit to his hometown

Portland on Tuesday, and one in which 130 friends and family were

slated to attend. Without its honorable mention All-American and

preseason all-Mountain West player, UNLV (6-1) trailed by nine

points early in the second half before pulling out a 68-60 win and

ending a four-game road losing streak that dated back to last


Freshman and leading scorer Anthony Bennett had a team-best 18

points. Anthony Marshall scored 16 after being held to single

digits in back-to-back games and Justin Hawkins contributed 15 off

the bench.

Moser, who is averaging 12.3 points and a team-high 9.2

rebounds, reportedly had an MRI come back negative Thursday, and he

was optimistic for a return to the court Sunday. The junior forward

suffered the injury in a 77-63 victory over Hawaii on Dec. 1, the

last of UNLV’s six consecutive games at the Thomas & Mack


“I don’t think it’s something too serious,” he said. “It’s

already feeling better.”

Because of the annual Nationals Finals Rodeo, the Rebels won’t

return to their home arena until Dec. 19 but will play at the

Orleans Arena in Las Vegas on Thursday against La Verne.

While Portland had a 3-3 record before facing UNLV, Cal will

carry an identical 6-1 mark into this game. The Golden Bears,

though, are coming off an 81-56 drubbing at Wisconsin last


Allen Crabbe, one of the nation’s leading scorers at 22.4 points

per game, had 25 points in the loss but only one other player

scored in double figures, junior guard Justin Cobbs with 11


“The only thing I can hope is that we learn from this,” coach

Mike Montgomery said. “Kids are kids, and they don’t always

understand how hard you have to play to get wins.”

Cobbs, who is averaging 18.7 points this season, had 20 in the

Bears’ most recent matchup with UNLV on Dec. 23 but Marshall scored

22 in an 85-68 victory for the then-No. 21 Rebels. Moser had 14

points and eight rebounds, while Crabbe missed nine of 13 shots en

route to 13 points.

UNLV has won four of the five all-time meetings with Cal,

including a 73-72 victory on Dec. 1, 2004, in its only visit to