Dwayne Morgan

Will Cummings, Cody Doolin

Cody Doolin’s late-game heroics push UNLV past Portland (VIDEO)

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Through his first nine games in a UNLV uniform, senior point guard Cody Doolin has proven to be a nice addition for head coach Dave Rice. On the season Doolin’s averaging 8.1 points per game, and he also has a team-best 47 assists with just nine turnovers. And Wednesday night in the Runnin’ Rebels’ 75-73 overtime win over Portland, Doolin showed just how valuable he is with two critical plays in crunch time.

The first play came in the final seconds of regulation as Doolin made his way to the basket and found a wide-open freshman Dwayne Morgan, who made the game-tying layup as time expired.

Doolin’s second big play came with four tenths of a second remaining in overtime, as this time he completed a drive to the basket on his own.

Doolin finished the game with 15 points, three assists and no turnovers, with freshman Rashad Vaughn leading the way for UNLV with a game-high 25 points to go along with seven rebounds. This is an important win for UNLV, as they complete their week with a game against No. 14 Utah Saturday night at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas.

Video credit: Tyler Bischoff (Mountain West Connection

7-foot center Chase Jeter replaces Dwayne Morgan on USA U18 National Team

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Just three days after USA Basketball announced the 12 members of the Under-18 National Team that will compete in the FIBA Americas U18 Championships that begin Friday, a family illness has necessitated a change. Due to that issue UNLV signee and 6-foot-7 forward Dwayne Morgan has to leave the team, with USA Basketball calling in 2015 center Chase Jeter to be Morgan’s replacement.

Jeter, a 7-footer who attends Bishop Gorman HS in Las Vegas, is a five-star prospect being recruited by many of the nation’s premier college programs. Among those in pursuit of Jeter’s services are Duke, Arizona, UCLA and UNLV.

“We’re really, really sorry that Dwayne is unable to play, he’s great kid and we’re sorry to hear about the illness in his family and we are supportive of his decision to return home,” U18 national team head coach Billy Donovan said in the release.

“So we’re bringing back Chase Jeter. It was really close with Chase, he played well enough during our training camp to make the team. I’m excited he’s willing to come back on such short notice. He’s a great kid and he really made a big impression on all of us.”

Jeter’s return to the squad means that Bishop Gorman now has two players on the roster, with fellow 7-footer Stephen Zimmerman being the other.

USA Basketball announces U18 national team

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On Sunday morning, USA Basketball announced its 12-man roster for the U18 national team competing in the 2014 FIBA Americas Championship.

The roster includes a pair of Duke signees, Tyus Jones and Justise Winslow. Both of them have experience with USA Basketball. Jones sparked his friendship with future teammate Jahlil Okafor through international play, and has won gold medals with the U16 and U17 teams. Winslow will be suiting up for the U18 team after winning gold with the U19 team in 2013. Arizona commit Stanley Johnson has also played for the national team for several years.

The team is coached by Florida head coach Billy Donovan. His coaching staff includes Providence’s Ed Cooley and Arizona’s Sean Miller

“I’m really excited about the team. As it is every year, it was a really hard selection process because only 12 guys can be on the team. We just tried not necessarily to take the 12 best players, we tried to take the guys that were going to make up the best team,”  Donovan said in a statement.. “We had the chance to look at this group for almost a week and all of them worked very, very hard. It’s never easy when you’ve got to get down to 12 guys because for as hard as everybody has worked you almost want everybody to be on the team, but it doesn’t work like that so it’s always a challenge.”

Here is the full roster:

  • Isaiah Briscoe; Roselle Catholic H.S. ’15 / Union, N.J.
  • Jaylen Brown; Wheeler H.S. / Alpharetta, Ga.
  • Jalen Brunson; Adlai E. Stevenson H.S. ’15 / Lincolnshire, Ill.
  • Stanley Johnson; Arizona ’14 / Fullerton, Calif.
  • Tyus Jones; Duke ’14 / Apple Valley, Minn.
  • Luke Kennard; Franklin H.S. ’15 / Franklin, Ohio (Duke)
  • Tyler Lydon; New Hampton School ’15 / Elizaville, N.Y.
  • Dwayne Morgan; UNLV ’14 / Baltimore, Md.
  • Allonzo Trier; Montrose Christian ’15 / Seattle, Wash.
  • Myles Turner; Texas ’14 / Bedford, Texas
  • Justise Winslow; Duke ’14 / Houston, Texas
  • Stephen Zimmerman; Bishop Gorman H.S. ’15 / Las Vegas, Nev.

USA Basketball will continue its training through June 19. The 2014 FIBA Americas U18 Championship takes place on from June 20-24 in Colorado Springs, Colorado.