Utah junior Morgan Warburton can't help but look back when it comes to analyzing the 20th-ranked Utes' current run of success.

They enter tonight's Mountain West Conference tilt at UNLV on a 13-game winning streak. The roll reminds Warburton of 2005-06 when Utah reached the NCAA Tournament's Elite Eight.

"(It's) the same feeling that everybody wanted the same thing when I was a freshman," Warburton said. "Everybody came to play. Everybody came to practice working hard. It's just the same thing that's here."

There's a twist, however.

Warburton is looking for Utah to advance beyond the Elite Eight this time

"I'm hoping we can get that far," she said. "And even better."

First things first. The Utes face UNLV in the final game of the first rotation of conference play.

The Rebels (6-14, 2-5) have lost five-straight games, including a 56-38 setback to TCU and a 94-64 loss at New Mexico last week.

They've lost eight consecutive meetings against Utah. Last season, the Utes prevailed 49-37 in Las Vegas and 57-38 in Salt Lake City.

Tonight's meeting is Utah's first since climbing into the national rankings for the first time since 2006.

Head coach Elaine Elliott said it'll be a good test for her team's goal of maintaining consistency. She acknowledged that "focus on preparation and competing" is working out well.

Utah's next home game is Saturday at 3 p.m. against Air Force.

Utes on the air

No. 20 Utah (18-3, 7-0) at UNLV (6-14, 2-5)

Cox Pavilion, Las Vegas

Today, 8 p.m. (MT)

TV: None Radio: 1280 AM

E-mail: dirk@desnews.com