Dec. 15, 2007
LOGAN, Utah - Utah State had season-highs in rebounding and steals as the Aggies pounded Prairie View A&M, 77-51, Saturday, opening a five-game homestand with roaring success at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum. Jaycee Carroll's game-high 19 points and Tai Wesley's first double-double of his Aggie career led the way for USU's victory.
Aggie head coach Stew Morrill coached his 300th game of his career, passing H. Cecil Baker (1951-61) for the second-most games coached in school history.
The Aggies won their second game in a row and fourth in the last five outings in improving to 7-5 while Prairie View A&M lost its fourth straight in falling to 2-7.
Carroll, a senior All-American guard from Evanston, Wyo., was one of three USU players in double-figures, followed by freshman forward Wesley (Provo, Utah), who was making his second straight start, with 11 points to go with his game-high 11 rebounds. Junior forward Stephen DuCharme (Andover, Kan.) tossed in 12 points off the bench.
Utah State was 13-of-14 for a season-high 92.9 percent at the free throw line, hitting the first 12 charity stripe shots until the only miss with 4:20 left in the game.
The Aggies hit 40.3 percent (29-of-72) field goal shooting, including 30.0 percent (6-of-20) behind the three-point arc.
USU held Prairie View A&M to an Aggie opponent season-low 36.0 percent (18-of-50) from the field and the Panthers hit 5-of-14 (35.7 percent) three-point shooting. At the free throw line, Prairie View A&M was 10-of-17 (58.8 percent), a USU opponent season-low for free throw percentage.
Utah State tied a season-high with 14 steals, part of the 23 Prairie View A&M turnovers which led to 30 Aggie points.
On the glass, USU pulled down a season-high 46 rebounds while Prairie View A&M had 33.
Down 4-2 in the early going, a Carroll three-pointer ignited a 7-0 USU spurt to give the Aggies the lead and they never relinquished it, increasing to double-digits at 19-7 on a trey from senior guard Kris Clark (Wilmington, N.C.). Another Carroll three-pointer with 1:46 in the half gave USU its first 20-point lead of the game at 46-25 and the Aggies took a 48-27 lead into halftime after freshman forward Matt Formisano (Centennial, Colo.) had a put back in the waning seconds.
Just over three minutes into the second half, Carroll had a fastbreak dunk for a 54-31 lead and Formisano put the Aggies up by 30 for the first time at 75-45 with 4:20 remaining and USU coasted to its 49th-straight home regular-season non-conference victory.
The win was also USU's 43rd home triumph in a row during the month of December as the Aggies are now 49-16 under Morrill in the 12th month of the year.
Utah State takes on in-state foe Utah Valley on Thursday, Dec. 20, as part of the Gossner Classic. Tip-off for the Aggies-Wolverines contest is slated for 8:05 p.m., following the opening game of the Classic between Furman and Northern Arizona which starts at 5:30 p.m.
Thursday's losers will face-off on Friday at 5:30 while the Classic championship game will start at 8:05 p.m. Friday.
Saturday's game was the Aggies' first in a span of eight home games in their next nine games.
Aggie basketball games are broadcast on KVNU (610 AM) and KLZX (95.9 FM) in Logan, Utah, KFAN (1320 AM) or ESPN Radio (1230 AM) in Salt Lake City and KLZX (105.3 FM) in Montpelier, Idaho, as well as on the internet at www.UtahStateAggies.com through Yahoo! Sports. Al Lewis serves as the play-by-play announcer.
For Utah State basketball ticket information, fans can go to www.UtahStateAggies.com and click on "tickets" or call the USU Ticket Office at 1-800-USTATE-1 or 435-797-0305.
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