National Basketball Association
UNLV 55, California 52
When: 8:00 PM ET, Saturday, November 13, 2021
Where: Thomas & Mack Center, Las Vegas, Nevada
Officials: # Larry Spaulding, # David Hall, # Verne Harris
Attendance: 4937

Bryce Hamilton gave UNLV the lead for good on a 3-pointer with 6:05 remaining and the host Rebels survived a frantic final 27 seconds to edge California 55-52 in a nonconference game Saturday night.

The tightly contested matchup saw Cal (0-2) trailing 53-48 after a Hamilton jumper with 2:56 to go before rallying.

Two free throws by Jalen Celestine at the 2:35 mark and a layup by Andre Kelly with 2:00 to go made it a one-point game.

The Bears then had three chances to take the lead, but a Hamilton steal and a Royce Hamm Jr. block with 27 seconds left thwarted the first two tries before Jordan Shepherd misfired on a 3-pointer with 15 seconds to go.

UNLV's Jordan McCabe increased the margin to 55-52 with a pair of free throws with 12 seconds remaining, and when Shepherd was off the mark again on a 3-pointer with three seconds left, the Rebels (2-0) had their second straight narrow win.

Hamilton finished with 12 points and Mike Nuga 10 for UNLV, which won despite shooting just 37.5 percent from the field. Donovan Williams finished with eight points off the bench, while Hamm had seven points and a team-high seven rebounds to go with two blocks.

Hamilton, Nuga and Williams hit two 3-pointers apiece for the Rebels, who outscored the Bears 30-12 from beyond the arc.

Grant Anticevich led Cal with 11 points, but it was Shepherd who took the important shots down the stretch. He finished with nine points but shot just 3-for-17.

Anticevich completed a double-double with a game-high 10 rebounds, while Kelly finished with eight points and eight rebounds.

Neither team led by more than six points in a first half that ended with the Rebels up 30-29. The first 20 minutes featured two ties and four lead changes.

Cal took its biggest lead at 44-38 when Celestine nailed a jumper with 9:20 remaining, and when Jarred Hyder dropped in a pair of free throws with 8:40 left, the Bears retained a 46-41 advantage.

But McCabe buried a 3-pointer and Williams dropped in a layup to get UNLV even at 46-all, setting up Hamilton's go-ahead 3-pointer and the exciting finish.

--Field Level Media

Top Game Performances
California   UNLV
Grant Anticevich 11 Scoring Bryce Hamilton 12
Andre Kelly 3 Assists Kershon Gilbert 3
Grant Anticevich 10 Rebounds Royce Hamm Jr. 7
Jalen Celestine 2 Free Throws Made Jordan McCabe 2
Joel Brown 2 Steals Marvin Coleman 1
N/A Blocks Royce Hamm Jr. 2
Team Stats Summary
Team Points FG% 3PM-3PA FTM-FTA Assists Rebounds Blocks Steals Turnovers
California 52 36.8 4-14 6-6 9 35 0 7 10
UNLV 55 37.5 10-29 3-5 14 30 3 4 13