Feb. 11, 2010
BOISE, Idaho - Senior guard Jared Quayle led a quarter of double-figure scorers for Utah State with 14 points as the Aggies held off Boise State for a 72-67 Western Athletic Conference win here inside Taco Bell Arena Thursday night.
Utah State improves to 19-6 overall and 9-2 in WAC play with the win, while Boise State falls to 11-3 on the season and 2-9 in league play with the loss. USU also took over sole possession of first-place in the WAC as New Mexico State lost at Fresno State, 83-64.
Quayle added a game-high nine rebounds for Utah State to go along with a season-high tying three steals, while junior forward Tai Wesley had 13 points and a season-high tying six assists. Junior guard Tyler Newbold scored 11 points to go along with four rebounds and three assists, while fellow junior guard Pooh Williams had 10 points and four assists.
Anthony Thomas had 15 points, five assists and three steals to lead Boise State.
Trailing by as many as 16 points midway through the second half Boise State got within two points twice in the final seconds, but Utah State made 5-of-6 free throws in the final 12 seconds to nullify the Broncos 24-10 run during the final 11 minutes of the game.
Leading 35-31 at the break, Wesley scored nine of Utah State's first 10 points of the second half to give the visitors its first double-digit lead of the game at 45-35 with 16:43 remaining. USU extended its lead to 16 at 57-41 with 11:21 to play following a jumper from Quayle as the Aggies went on an 18-6 run over a 6:37 stretch.
Utah State maintained its double-digit lead for the next five minutes and led 59-45 with 8:35 to play following a layup from sophomore forward Brady Jardine before Boise State began to chip away at the Aggie lead as the Broncos got with four at 63-59 with 2:09 to play and later trailed by just two at 67-65 with 12 seconds remaining before USU won the game at the free throw line.
Utah State finished the game by shooting 49.0 percent from the field (25-51), 47.4 percent from three-point range (9-19) and 68.4 percent at the free throw line (13-19). Boise State shot 53.8 percent overall (28-52), which is the highest shooting percentage by a USU opponent this year. The Broncos were also 5-of-15 from behind the arc (.333) and just 6-of-8 at the free throw line (.750).
Utah State trailed only once during the game, 3-2, before taking its biggest lead of the half at 32-24 following a three-pointer from Newbold with 3:42 to play. The Broncos then finished the half on a 7-3 run to get within four at 35-31 at intermission.
Newbold led Utah State with nine first-half points, while Williams had eight. In the first-half, USU shot 43.3 percent (13-30) and was 8-of-15 (.533) from three-point range. Boise State shot 52.0 percent from the field in the first 20 minutes (13-25) and 62.5 percent from behind the arc (5-8). Thomas had nine points for the Broncos during the first-half, while Paul Noonan scored eight.
Utah State will conclude its two-game road trip at San Jose State on Saturday, Feb. 13 at 8 p.m. (MT).
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