UNLV wins its second-ever Mountain West Conference Tournament championship, and for the second time the win was over BYU, as the Runnin' Rebels also won the 2000 title over the Cougars. Both championship game victories came in Las Vegas in the Thomas & Mack Center.
The win broke a three-game losing streak in the championship game for UNLV, as it had lost the 2002, 2003, and 2004 title games. UNLV is now 14-5 all-time in the MWC tournament, which is the best record of any MWC team.
BYU's all-time record in MWC tournament play fell to 8-7, and 1-2 in the championship game.
The crowd of 16,204 is a new record attendance for both a championship game and a tournament game overall. The previous record attendance was 15,635, set during the 2003 semifinals in the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.
UNLV missed its first nine shots from the floor, and 14 of its first 15, while BYU made seven of its first 11 shots, including both from three-point range, to begin the game with a 16-3 lead eight minutes into the game. Lee Cummard was a perfect 3-of-3 from the floor for BYU during the stretch for seven points, and also had six rebounds in the opening eight minutes.
Michael Umeh scored UNLV's first six points, as he was 2-of-3 from the floor, all from three-point range. The rest of the team was 0-of-13.
UNLV closed to within single digits with a 7-0 run, and held BYU without a point for a 5:16-span, to make the score 24-17.
BYU ended the half with seven unanswered points, and scored the first basket of the second half for a three-minute, 9-0 run that made the score 39-26 with 18:54 left in the game.
An 8-0 UNLV run, capped by a Kevin Kruger four-point play, brought the Runnin' Rebels within five, 41-36, with 16:49 to play in the game.
UNLV took its first lead of the game on a Wink Adams three-pointer with 11:45 left, giving the Rebels a 51-50 advantage with 11:45 on the clock.
Following a basket by BYU's Keena Young, UNLV went on a 7-1 run over a 1:43 span to open up a 66-60 lead with 3:50 to play. BYU came no closer then three points the rest of the game.
UNLV made 9-of-10 at the free throw line in the final 1:30 of the second half to seal the game.
UNLV set a new record for most steals in an MWC tournament with 29 over its three games. The previous record was 25 shared by UNLV and San Diego State. The Runnin' Rebels also set a new record for most three-pointers made in an MWC tournament with 29, breaking the previous record of 26, set by New Mexico in 2005.
Other tournament records set by UNLV include total margin of victory over a three-game span (+50 points), breaking the previous record of 38 set by UNLV in 2000, and field-goal percentage (51.5%) for the tournament, topping 50 percent set by New Mexico in 2005
Young set a new MWC championship game record with a career-high 34 points, which also ranks second all-time in the tournament. He was 13-of-18 from the floor, and the 13 made field goals set a new tournament record.
Cummard finished with 13 points and a career-high 13 rebounds for his third double-double of the season and in his career.
BYU's Austin Ainge finished with a career-high 10 assists, also setting an MWC championship game record and ranking third all-time in the MWC Tournament overall.
UNLV extended its home-winning streak to 17 games, which is the 12th-longest active streak in the nation.
2007 MWC MEN'S ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM Kevin Kruger, UNLV (MVP) Wink Adams, UNLV
Lee Cummard, BYU
Keena Young, BYU
Trent Plaisted, BYU
Brad Jones, Wyoming