Feb. 11, 2008
RENO, Nev. - Senior All-American guard Jaycee Carroll scored 29 points, including 24 in the second-half as Utah State lost to Nevada, 85-80, here at the Lawlor Events Center Monday night.
With the loss, USU falls to 18-7 overall and 8-2 in the Western Athletic Conference, while Nevada improves to 16-8 on the season and 8-3 in the league. Despite the setback, USU remains in first-place in the conference, one-half game ahead of Boise State, New Mexico State and Nevada, who are all 8-3 in league play.
Marcelus Kemp scored a career-high 35 points to lead Nevada, while Armon Johnson scored 16 points and JaVale McGee added 12 points and six blocks. Kemp scored 22 of his points in the second-half, including making 5-of-6 free throws in the final 35 seconds.
Freshman forward Tai Wesley recorded his second double-double of the season for Utah State with 13 points and 10 rebounds, while junior forward Gary Wilkinson added 12 points and eight rebounds, to extend his double-figure scoring streak to eight straight games. Senior guard Kris Clark added seven points and 10 assists for the Aggies, tying his career-high.
Leading by eight at the break, Nevada scored the first four points of the second-half before Utah State scored seven straight points to cut the deficit to five at 42-37. The Wolf Pack then went on a 16-4 run to lead 58-41. The margin grew to 18 at 64-46 with 10:17 to play before the Aggies slowly chipped away and cut the lead to four at 78-74 on a dunk by Wilkinson by 46 seconds left. Nevada then made 7-of-8 free throws down the stretch to secure the win.
Utah State finished the game by shooting 51.6 percent from the field (33-64) and 46.7 percent from three-point range (7-15), while Nevada shot 47.6 percent overall (30-63) and 42.1 percent from behind the arc (8-19). The Wolf Pack also made 17-of-23 (.739) free throws, while the Aggies were just 7-of-10 (.700) from the charity stripe. USU did out-rebound UN 36-33.
Nevada scored the first five points of the game before Utah State got on the board courtesy of a jumper by Wesley. USU then took its first lead of the game at the 9:43 mark via a layup by Wilkinson to make the score 16-14. UN regained the momentum and led 25-20 only to see the Aggies go on an 8-2 run to lead 28-27. Nevada answered the Aggies' run with an 11-0 spurt to take its biggest led of the half at 38-28.
In the first-half, Utah State 46.7 percent from the field (14-30), while Nevada shot 48.4 percent (15-31). The Wolf Pack were also 5-of-9 (.556) from three-point range, while USU was just 1-of-3 (.333). Kemp led Nevada with 13 first-half points, while Wesley had eight for the Aggies.
Utah State will remain on the road as it continues its three-game road stretch at Hawai'i (10-12, 6-4) on Saturday, Feb. 16 at 10 p.m. (MT).
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