Jan. 14, 2010
RENO, Nev. - Utah State used a 24-7 run during the final 12:00 minutes of the game and held Nevada to 2-of-18 shooting from the field to rally for a 79-72 overtime win against the Wolf Pack here Wednesday night in a nationally televised game on ESPN2. With the win, Utah State improves to 2-2 in the Western Athletic Conference and 12-6 on the season, while Nevada falls to 10-7 overall and 2-2 in league play with the loss.
Utah State, who has notched two straight victories at Nevada, improves to 29-12 all-time against the Wolf Pack and has won six of the last eight games played in the series.
Utah State also improves to 51-39 all-time in overtime games, which includes a 24-24 record on the road and a 3-1 ledger against Nevada. It was also USU's fourth straight overtime victory dating back to the 2006-07 season.
Senior guard Jared Quayle led Utah State with 21 points, seven rebounds and five assists, including 13 points after intermission. Junior guard Pooh Williams had 16 points and five assists, while junior forward Tai Wesley scored 15 points to go along with six rebounds and four blocks after scoring just two points in the first half to give him 1,000 points in his career. Fellow junior forward Nate Bendall added nine points and six boards, while junior guard Tyler Newbold tied his career-high with 11 rebounds to go along with five points and four assists.
Luke Babbitt had game-highs with 26 points and 12 rebounds to pace Nevada, while Ray Kraemer scored 14 points off the bench. Brandon Fields finished the game with 13 points and Armon Johnson had 10 points and nine assists.
Nevada seemed to have the game under control after going on a 13-2 run midway through the second-half to turn a 50-49 deficit into a 62-52 lead with 9:03 to play in the game. Williams then hit a three-pointer for USU to cut the deficit to seven, but UN scored the next three points to again lead by 10 at 65-55 with 7:00 minutes to play.
During the final seven minutes of regulation Utah State clamped down defensively and went on an 11-0 run that began with a bucket from Wesley and ended with a Quayle three-pointer to regain the lead, 66-65, with 2:50 remaining. USU later led by two points at 69-67 following a layup from Wesley only to see Johnson tie the game on a reverse layup. Following turnovers from each team within a three second span of one another in the final seconds, USU had a chance to win the game in regulation but Newbold missed a three-pointer from the baseline at the buzzer. During the final 7:00 minutes of regulation, USU held the Wolf Pack to 2-of-10 shooting from the field.
Following a missed jumper by Johnson to start the extra period, Newbold hit his only three-pointer of the game from the same spot as his final attempt of regulation to give the visitors a 72-69 lead. Nevada would eventually tie the game at 72-all on three free throws, but that would be the only points the home team scored in the extra period as USU finished the game with a 7-0 run as Quayle hit another trey, Bendall made a pair of free throws and Williams scored a dunk to make the final score 79-72. During the extra period, USU was 3-of-5 from the field and held Nevada to 0-for-8 shooting.
Utah State finished the game by shooting 46.2 percent overall (30-65), including 50.0 percent from three-point range (8-16) and 84.6 percent at the free throw line (11-13). Nevada shot just 41.5 percent (27-65) from the field and was just 9-of-18 at the free throw line (.500), but did convert 9-of-18 from behind the arc (.500). USU also won the battle of the boards, 43-36, and committed just 10 turnovers in the game.
Nevada held an early 5-2 advantage before Utah State scored five straight points to take its first lead at 7-5 following a three-pointer from Quayle. The Aggies increased its lead to six at 30-24 following another trey from Quayle with 4:03 to play, but the Wolf Pack finished the half with an 11-3 run, including the final five points on a three-pointer by Babbitt and a layup by Johnson following a turnover, to go into the locker room with a 35-33 advantage.
Quayle and Williams each scored eight points in the first-half for Utah State, while Newbold had seven rebounds during the first 20 minutes. In the first-half, Utah State shot 42.4 percent from the field (14-33), 33.3 percent from three-point range (2-6) and 75.0 percent at the free throw line (3-4).
Fields had 11 points in the first-half to lead Nevada as the Wolf Pack shot 43.3 percent overall (13-30), but 66.7 percent from behind the arc (6-9). UN was also 3-of-8 (.375) at the free throw line.
Utah State will return home and host Boise State on Saturday, Jan. 16 in a game that will be televised regionally on CW30.
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