UNLV vs. California: Golden Bears 'dominated in the post' for March Madness win

Ethan Miller

California pulled off a surprising upset by beating the Runnin' Rebels in convincing fashion.

The No. 12 California Golden Bears weren't given much of a shot to beat the fifth-seeded UNLV Runnin' Rebels on Thursday night. Then again, that's why they play the games.

California was able to pull away early in the second half and then hang on for a 64-61 upset victory, setting up a date with the Big East's Syracuse Orange.

It was the inside game that shocked everyone in its productivity. Over at our blog, California Golden Blogs, Norcalnick wrote about how the game was won in the interior:

But what if Cal actually won the game inside? What if Cal's forwards outscored the guards? What if a future lottery pick was absolutely flustered by an active zone defense? What if the Bears came up with 10 dunks and outscore UNLV in the paint, 34 to 18?

Because all of those things happened. Cal beat a team with two NBA draftable forwards by dominating them in the post on both ends. I didn't think it was possible.

Guard Allen Crabbe led all scorers with 19 points in the game, shooting 7-for-15 from the field while also pulling down nine rebounds, dishing out four assists and nabbing two steals.

Now, Syracuse stands between California and a stunning Sweet 16 berth. Only a few days ago, many were saying how the Golden Bears had no right to be in the tournament. How things change so quickly.

More in College Basketball:

Friday’s NCAA Tournament TV schedule

March Madness: Thursday's scores, updates, GIFs and more

Printable bracket for March Madness

Chasing Cinderella: Iona's inspiring run

An oral history of Bryce Drew's epic buzzer-beater

Full coverage of March Madness

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