Dec. 18, 2009
LONG BEACH, Calif. - T.J. Robinson recorded his sixth double-double of the season with 25 points and 11 rebounds and Casper Ware added 19 points to lead Long Beach State to a 75-62 win against Utah State here Friday night.
Long Beach State, who had lost the last eight games in the series, improves to 6-4 on the year with the win. Utah State, who is now 2-3 on the road, falls to 6-4 with the loss.
Junior forward Tai Wesley (Provo, Utah) led Utah State with a season-high 22 points to go along with seven rebounds as he was 10-of-12 from the field and the only Aggie to score in double-figures. Freshman guard Preston Medlin (Carrollton, Texas) added nine points off the bench, while junior forward Nate Bendall (Salt Lake City, Utah) had eight points and seven boards.
Long Beach State made its first seven shots of the second half to open a double-digit lead and Utah State never got within single-digits again as the 49ers took its biggest lead of the game at 66-49 with 7:15 remaining on a free throw by Robinson.
Utah State finished the game by shooting a season-low 38.2 percent from the field (21-55), a season-low 20.0 percent from three-point range (4-20) and 72.7 percent from the free throw line (16-22). Long Beach State shot 51.0 percent overall (25-49) including 61.9 percent in the second-half. The 49ers were also 8-of-19 (.421) from behind the arc for the game and 17-of-22 at the charity stripe (.773). The 51.0 percent shooting by LBSU is a season-high for a USU opponent.
Utah State did out-rebound Long Beach State, 33-30, while the 49ers committed 13 turnovers as compared to 11 for the visitors.
Wesley scored eight of Utah State's first 13 points as the Aggies trailed by one at 14-13 before Long Beach State scored five straight points to open its biggest lead of the half at 19-13 with 10:44 remaining. USU then scored five straight points on a pair of free throws by junior guard Tyler Newbold and a three-pointer from fellow junior guard Brian Green. The Aggies eventually tied the game at 26-all following a jump hook from Wesley only to see the 49ers go on another mini 5-0 run. USU ended the scoring in the first half on a jumper by junior guard Pooh Williams to make the score 31-28 at intermission.
Wesley led Utah State with 12 first-half points as the Aggies shot just 37.0 percent from the field (10-27), and 22.2 percent from three-point range (2-9). Long Beach State had three players each with nine first-half points as it shot 42.9 percent from the field (12-28), 36.4 percent from behind the arc and was a perfect 3-of-3 at the free throw line. USU, who was 6-of-6 at the charity stripe held a 19-13 rebounding advantage at the break.
Utah State will return home and host the Cal State Fullerton, Morehead State and Weber State in the Basketball Travelers Invitational sponsored by Gossner Foods on Monday through Wednesday, Dec. 21-23. USU will begin the tournament against Morehead State on Monday at 8 p.m.
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