SALT LAKE CITY, Utah - Utah State (3-3) lost a 77-63 decision to BYU (4-3) on Wednesday night, despite out shooting the Cougars 41.3 percent (26-of-63) to the Cougars' 35.2 percent (25-of-71). The outcome really came down to the battle of the boards, where USU was outrebounded 55-31, including 23 offensive rebounds by BYU.
Utah State was led in scoring by senior wing Jalen Moore with 15 points, marking his 19th consecutive game scoring in double figures. He was followed by sophomore forward Norbert Janicek with 12, senior guard Shane Rector with 11 and freshman guard Koby McEwen with 10. Sophomore forward Quinn Taylor led the Aggies with six rebounds and tied for the team lead with three assists, matching freshman guard Sam Merrill.
Utah State outshot the Cougars in the first half 43.8 percent (14-of-32) to 38.6 percent (17-of-44), but trailed at the break 37-31 as BYU recorded 30 rebounds to the Aggies' 16, including 14 offensive rebounds leading to 14 second-chance points. USU hit the first two baskets of the game behind a jumper by Moore and a three from Rector, taking a 5-0 lead a minute into the contest. BYU came back with six unanswered points, taking a 6-5 lead and held the advantage for the rest of the half.
The Cougar lead grew to 25-13, but Utah State battled back to within two, 27-25, following a 12-2 run, capped by a jumper by Moore with 6:13 on the clock. The difference then hovered between four and six points down the stretch with the Cougars taking the 37-31 lead into the half.
Jumpers by Janicek and Moore out of the break pulled the Aggies to within three, 38-35, two minutes into the half, but it was as close as Utah State came in the second half. BYU finished the game 10-of-11 from the free throw line en route to the 77-63 win.
Utah State will be back in action on Saturday night, hosting Indiana State in the annual Mountain West/Missouri Valley Challenge. Fans are encouraged to wear black to “Black Out” the Spectrum, with the Aggies also donning black. Tip-off for the game is scheduled for 7 p.m.
For Aggie basketball ticket information, fans can contact the USU Athletics Ticket Office over the phone by calling 1-888-USTATE-1 or435-797-0305 during regular hours of operation. Fans can also buy their tickets in person at the USU Ticket Office inside the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum or online by clicking on the “Buy Tickets” tab at www.UtahStateAggies.com.
Utah State men’s basketball news and information is available on Facebook facebook.com/USUmen’sbasketball and on Twitter @Aggiehoops. Fans can also get USU men’s basketball highlights on YouTube at youtube.com/UtahStateAthletics. Aggie fans can follow the Utah State athletic program at Twitter @USUAthletics, on Facebook at facebook.com/USUAthletics, or on Instagram @USUAthletics.
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