UNLV BASKETBALL:

Notebook: Ankle injury in warm-ups stymies Shaw’s return to starting lineup

Junior forward sprains left ankle, status still unknown for Saturday

UNLV vs Utah

The NCAA Tournament hopes for UNLV took a major hit Wednesday, with the Rebels falling at Utah, 66-61.

UNLV-Utah Basketball

Utah guard Carlon Brown (15) drives around UNLV forward Darris Santee (44) during the Utes' 66-61 upset victory over the Rebels in Salt Lake City on Feb. 17. Launch slideshow »

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The Rebel Room

UTAH POSTGAME: The third cut is the deepest

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Ryan Greene and Christine Killimayer come to you from Salt Lake City, where they discuss UNLV's 66-61 loss at Utah — the team's third straight — and what the implications were towards the Rebels' postseason hopes.

SALT LAKE CITY — When it rains, it pours. And amidst the rain that is UNLV's current three-game skid, it poured on junior forward Matt Shaw's left ankle.

Shaw had earned his spot in the starting lineup back after a six-game stint as a reserve behind sophomore Brice Massamba, but he never got to reap the benefits of his recent work, suffering a sprained ankle during warm-ups prior to UNLV's 66-61 loss Wednesday at Utah.

"Freak accident," he said afterward. "I just went up to dunk, somebody was under me, I rolled on their foot."

In Shaw's absence, Massamba had two points, two rebounds and two assists to go with three turnovers in 13 minutes.

Senior Darris Santee took advantage of the extended look, playing a season-high 27 minutes. He came through with six points, six rebounds and three steals. Santee also had a second-chance bucket to tie the game up late at 61-61.

While the rest of the team was on the floor for the national anthem, Shaw was in the locker room receiving treatment on his ankle.

He said he's hopeful for a return to action on Saturday against Colorado State.

Other bumps and bruises

Also icing a tender ankle after the game was Massamba, who turned his underneath the basket during Wednesday's second half.

Meanwhile, freshman guard Anthony Marshall took a good shot to his lower back when crashing in the first half after attempting a shot at the rim in transition.

Going up against a taller defender, Marshall was called for an offensive foul, then went crashing to the floor and was in obvious pain. He returned to action later after spending a couple of minutes on the ground.

Inside the numbers

A look within the box score from Wednesday's game ...

• While UNLV didn't have a second major scoring threat behind Tre'Von Willis on Wednesday, Lon Kruger did get some decent contributions elsewhere. Chace Stanback scored nine points to go with his five rebounds and three steals, while Justin Hawkins came up big at times off of the bench with six points in 15 minutes.

• Anthony Marshall was scoreless in 25 minutes after scoring 12 points Saturday at San Diego State, but the freshman guard did have nine rebounds and three assists.

• 7-foot-3 sophomore center David Foster didn't quite hurt UNLV like he did in the first meeting this season, as he was scoreless in 27 minutes with three rebounds and two blocked shots. However, Utah still out-rebounded UNLV, 34-28, and scored 13 second-chance points.

Kendall Wallace went without a made 3-pointer for the second consecutive game, as he was 0-for-1 from deep in 13 minutes on the floor. He hasn't gone back-to-back games without hitting a 3-point shot since doing so late last season in two games against San Diego State, closing out the regular season and opening the Mountain West tournament.

• UNLV had more turnovers than assists for the second straight game, for just the second time this season. They had 10 assists and 13 giveaways.

What's on tap?

UNLV will host Colorado State in a 3 p.m. contest Saturday at the Thomas & Mack Center.

And while the Rebels are trying to snap a three-game losing streak, the Rams just had a three-game winning streak brought to a halt Wednesday, getting rolled by No. 16 BYU, 92-70, in Fort Collins, Colo.

UNLV knocked off CSU on the road Jan. 20, 80-72, and the Rams will come to Las Vegas at 15-10 overall and 6-5 in the Mountain West.

Looking for payback against UNLV will be standout junior forward Andy Ogide, who was held to just four points and two rebounds in 28 minutes in the first meeting. In seven games since then, he's averaging 11.9 points and 6.7 boards.

The Final Word

UNLV guard Tre'Von Willis on how the Rebels plan on snapping their skid: "We've got to keep doing what we've been doing all season long. We can't switch up anything now. We're gonna play our game regardless of who we play and the style that that team presents. We've definitely got to start dictating a little more for the whole 40 minutes, you know, instead of being on our heels a little bit."

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  1. He sprained his ankle during warm ups. WARM UPS. Where does Kruger find these guys?

  2. @2323
    Sammy Sosa injured his back sneezing, weird stuff happens. Are you that eager to blame that you are grapsing at stuff like this?

  3. Not blaming Shaw for the loss. Blaming Kruger for giving the glass house a division 1 scholarship.