LAS VEGAS (AP) Patrick McCaw scored 15 points, and UNLV's defense stiffened down the stretch, helping the Running Rebels avoid a disappointing loss Friday night as they outlasted Cal Poly 74-72 in the season opener for both teams.
Cal Poly trailed by as many as 13 points in the second half but tied it 67-all with 2:20 left on Joel Awich's dunk. Jordan Cornish followed with a layup to put UNLV back on top, and the Rebels defense went to work, forcing a stop on each of the Mustangs' next four possessions.
After three missed UNLV free throws, David Nwaba's 3-point play got Cal Poly back within 2, but Jerome Seagers hit two free throws to give the Rebels a 4-point lead with 14 seconds left.
Awich and Nwaba each scored 15 points for Cal Poly, which committed 30 fouls and 14 turnovers.