RENO, NV - The Iona College men's basketball team dropped its third straight decision in an 80-72 defeat at Nevada. Sophomore A.J. English led the Gaels (5-5) with 22 points in the ESPNU Bracketbusters return matchup at the Lawlor Events Center.
The Gaels led by as many as eight points in the first half when freshman Daniel Robinson's baseline eight-foot jumper made the score 38-30 with 3:43 left. Nevada (5-7) chipped away and got within two points ending the frame scoring five straight points and a 10-4 run.
A Cole Huff three-pointer on his team's first possession gave Nevada a one-point lead. The two teams traded leads and ties over the next 5:38. A three pointer by Jerry Evans Jr. with 14:22 remaining put the Wolf Pack ahead for good. The basket sparked an 11-2 run for Nevada and saw the Gaels shoot 1-of-5 with two turnovers and facing an eight-point deficit with 11:15 to play. Back-to-back trifectas by seniors DaShawn Gomez and Sean Armand got the Gaels within two points with 8:15 remaining. Nevada answered with a Michael Perez layup and Devonte Burton three-ball and led 68-61 with 6:47 remaining. The home team's nine point advantage with 2:21 remaining was the largest of the game. The Gaels could not get any closer than six points over the final 141 seconds of the contest.
English's 22 points came on 8-for-16 shooting from the field and 6-of-12 from beyond the arc. He added five assists and three rebounds with a block and a steal. Armand had a seven-game 20+ point streak snapped with 15. He added five rebounds, four assists, two steals and a block. Senior Tre Bowman had 11 points while junior David Laury added eight points and nine rebounds in the loss.
Burton led Nevada with 20 points and six assists. Evans Jr. added 18 points and six boards. Perez had 14 points while Cole Huff posted a 13-point, 10-rebound double-double.
Nevada out shot (50.8%-43.5%) and out rebounded (38-32) the Gaels in the win.
The Maroon & Gold completes its non-conference slate next Saturday at Northern Iowa.