RUNNIN’ REBELS DEFEAT ROBERT MORRIS, 81-69

Marvin Coleman and Vitaliy Shibel scored career highs with 16 and 13 points, respectively, Saturday afternoon at the Thomas & Mack Center
LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) – Four Runnin’ Rebels scored in double figures, including career highs from sophomore guard Marvin Coleman and senior forward Vitaliy Shibel, as the UNLV men’s basketball team defeated Robert Morris, 81-69, Saturday afternoon at the Thomas & Mack Center.
Coleman scored 16 points and Shibel added 13 for UNLV (5-8), while junior forwards Mbacke Diong and Donnie Tillman each had a game-high-tying 17 points.
 
Robert Morris (4-9) also had four players score in double figures, led by Josh Williams’ 17 points.
THE TURNING POINT: UNLV took control with a 16-4 run over a five-minute span in the second half, turning a two-point lead into 14 with 12:28 to play (58-44).
LINEUP SHUFFLE: UNLV’s starters were senior forward Nick Blair, Shibel, Diong, sophomore guard Jay Green and Coleman. Freshman guard Trey Hurlburt was the first off the bench.
QUOTABLE: “Really proud of our guys’ effort that they displayed today. I thought Marvin Coleman displayed the heart of a champion and winner. Love to see the effort of guys like Jay Green who haven’t had an opportunity. The passion he plays with, how thankful and grateful he is to be a member of this program. Those guys set a great example today. To me, being the leader of this program, it is very humbling and I have a tremendous sense of gratitude and pride. I have studied it for a number of years, feel very fortunate to have this opportunity and I am going to make sure every day that everything that we do reflects that. So I am really proud of some individuals today who embody what it is to be a Rebel. It is my job to continue to develop that culture, have that accountability and set that standard.” – UNLV head coach T.J. Otzelberger.
 
NOTES: 
– Shibel, Diong and Coleman shot a combined 19 of 25 (.760) from the floor.
– UNLV outrebounded the Colonials 36-19 and grabbed 17 offensive boards.
– UNLV shot 55.4 percent for the game (31 of 56), including 63 percent in the second half (17 of 27).
– There were 16 lead changes and seven ties throughout the game, but UNLV led for 30:10.
– UNLV outscored RMU 50-18 in points in the paint and 22-3 in second-chance points.
– UNLV outscored RMU 47-34 in the second half after trailing by one at the break.
– UNLV recorded just two turnovers in the second half, finishing the game with 11.
– Robert Morris made 11 3-pointers to UNLV’s 3.
– UNLV was without senior guard Elijah Mitrou-Long for the fourth straight game because of a broken thumb.
– UNLV has made at least one 3-pointer in a NCAA-record 1,083 straight games.
 
NEXT FOR THE RUNNIN’ REBELS: UNLV will continue its five-game homestand on Saturday, Dec. 28 vs. Eastern Michigan at 12 p.m. at the Thomas & Mack Center.
 
-UNLV-