Boise State Edges Utah, 69-67
Dec. 04, 2013
Mikey Thompson tallied 13 points for the Broncos, who are off to the first 7-0 start in school history. Ryan Watkins pulled down a team-high 10 rebounds, his fourth straight game with double-digit rebounds.
"We were challenged tonight," Anthony Drmic said. "Pressure games are great because as a team you individually and collectively build more confidence."
Jordan Loveridge scored 16 of his 19 points in the second half and Delon Wright added 15 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists for the Utes (6-1).
Loveridge hit a 3-pointer with 1:46 left to give Utah a 66-65 lead and Marks answered with a floater in the lane with 49 seconds left and hit two free throws with 16.7 seconds remaining. Loveridge missed a tying 3-point attempt with seven seconds to go.
Marks picked up his forth foul wth 15:56 left in the game and sat until 3:07 left in the game. He scored Boise State's final six points.
"You can count on him to make big plays and he delivers," Boise State coach Leon Rice said of Marks. "It's tough to do too when you have to sit for 10 straight minutes."
Utah's Princeton Onwas was given a flagrant-2 foul and ejected late in the first half when he delivered an elbow into the face of Jeff Elorriaga after catching a pass in the left corner.
The Broncos led 37-29 early in the second half before Utah rolled off eight straight - five by Loveridge - to knot the score with 15:09 remaining. Thompson drained an 18-footer to put Boise State back ahead and Utah answered with Kenneth Ogbe hitting two 3-pointers and Loveridge knocking down one during a 9-2 run for a 46-42 lead with 12:10 to play.
The Utes again had a four-point edge after Loveridge's hoop with 8:15 to play before Thompson converted a three-point play and Drmic scored five points during a 10-1 surge to give the Broncos a 61-56 edge with 5:29 to go.
Utah battled back to tie the game at 63 on Brandon Taylor's layup with 2:46 remaining.
Attendance for tonight's game was 7,151, the largest crowd of the season at Taco Bell Arena.
"It was a great atmosphere," Rice said, "I thank the crowd for coming out on a cold, blistery night at 8 p.m. on a Tuesday."
The Utes and Broncos entered the contest as two of the remaining 20 undefeated teams in the nation.
"How can you not be excited when you play games like these?" said Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak. "Boise will be a top-25 team and we were really pleased with our performance."
Boise State led the nation in scoring at 97.7 points prior to the contest while matching the best start in program history. Meanwhile, the Utes were also filling up the basket with a 90.7 average that ranked sixth nationally while starting 6-0 for the first time in 15 seasons.
Yet scoring was in short supply during a first half that ended with Boise State holding a 32-25 halftime lead despite shooting just 26.7 percent from the field.
The teams were a combined 8-of-30 from the field over the first 10 minutes as Boise State held a 13-10 lead. Utah had a 20-17 advantage after Dakarai Tucker's basket with 6:26 to go in the half before Boise State received back-to-back 3-pointers from Elorriaga and Nick Duncan to take a 3-point lead.
Shortly thereafter, Utah's Onwas delivered an elbow into the face of Elorriaga and was assessed a flagrant-2 foul and ejected. Elorriaga hit the ensuing two free throws and Marks scored on a driving hoop a minute later to give the Broncos a 30-23 advantage en route to a seven-point halftime lead.
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