6 Reasons Why UNLV Football Has Won Two Games In a Row

UNLV Rebels Running Back Charles Williams runs hard against Hawaii Rainbow Warriors

The UNLV Rebels football team has won two-straight games and accomplished it with a bruising running attack plus an even more killer defense.

Winning Second Game

After giving up a 79-yard touchdown pass on the first play of the game, running back Charles Williams scored a 7-yard touchdown run to give the Rebels a 17-10 lead early in the second half.

Kicker Matthew Shipley made a 43-yard field goal to cut the lead to 20-13 early in the fourth quarter. The Rebels defense then contained the Rainbow Warriors offense the rest of the game.

They held the Warriors to only 10 first downs and two field goals. On offense, the Rebel’s running game stole the show as well. The final score was UNLV 27, Hawaii 13.

UNLV regained the coveted golden pineapple

The Golden Pineapple is a trophy earned by the winning team between UNLV and Hawaii. The game is actually called, “Ninth Island Showdown.” It is sponsored by the California Hotel

The tradition started in 2017, with UNLV winning the first game. The team lost the next three games including the last game of the year in 2020 (38-21) at Aloha Stadium in Hawaii.

RB Charles Williams named mountain west offensive player of the week

Williams had career highs in both rushing yards (266) and carries (38) in the game played against the Warriors. Because of the stellar rushing and record breaking performance, Williams was named the Mountain West Offensive Player of the Week.

It was also the first home game won by the Rebels’ second-year, head coach Marcus Arroyo. He and the team went winless in 2020.

Breaking Ickey Wood’s old uNLV Carries per game record

With this weeks win, William’s broke Ickey Wood’s 34-year-old school record for carries in a game with (38).

Besides winning their first home game under Arroyo, it was won in front of 19,623 fans at Allegiant Stadium, as they were treated to a special event.

Williams runs for 266 yards, 3 td’s in uNLV’s win Over Hawaii

William’s is already the career rushing leader for UNLV, and still broke the record with 38 carries. He also rushed for 200 yards for the second time in his career. He then became the fourth UNLV player to rush for over 1,000 yards, twice.

Williams broke another record during the game when he passed Boise State’s Jay-Ajayi to move into fourth place on the Mountain West Conference career. His rushing list reached 4,035 yards.

Williams has rushed for 32 career touchdowns, including a personal best (13) this season.

Head Coach Marcus Arroyo pumps up team during the “Ninth Island Showdown” against the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors

Coach Arroyo’s Quotes about Williams

Arroyo was more than pleased with Williams’ performance versus a team that’s snatched the Golden Pineapple away from them the last 3 games of the Ninth Island Series.

Arroyo is coming off a winless season last year. His goal for this year is to just win a game and build long term success.

After starting 0-8 this year, he cleared his cobwebs with his first win as a head coach last week. The Rebel’s defeated New Mexico State on the road. Now he has two-straight wins. He has to feel good now about the process of building this team towards a Mountain West Conference Championship.

Arroyo told KTNV ABC 13 Las Vegas news, “Charles did a heck of a job upfront with the line. The thing I’m most proud of behind the stat lines is the resiliency of this group when things weren’t perfect.”

“There’s a lot of good things that can come from that when you find out you can win that way and you can finish a game and you believe in each other,” coach Arroyo said.

Now let’s see if the Rebels can make it 3-in-a-row!

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