Second Half Surge Pushes Broncos Past Hawai?i
HONOLULU, Hawai’i – A strong defensive effort helped the Boise State men’s basketball team overcome a halftime deficit, and the Broncos cruised to a 79-55 win over Hawaii at Stan Sheriff Center.

Senior guard La’Shard Anderson scored 20 points and freshman forward Thomas Bropleh added a career-high 14 as the Broncos improved to 4-0 in the Western Athletic Conference for the first time since joining the league prior to the 2001-02 season.

The last time Boise State (11-5) started conference play with four-straight wins was in 1998-99, when the team was in the Big West. Hawaii dropped to 9-7 overall and 0-4 in the WAC.

After the Broncos jumped out to a 9-2 lead, the Rainbow Warriors went on a 17-3 run, pulling ahead by seven at 19-12. Anderson nailed back-to-back 3-pointers and later tied the game at 21 with a free throw, but Hawai’i didn’t trail for the remainder of the half, entering intermission with a 31-29 advantage.

Boise State came out firing in the second half, knocking down two 3-pointers in the opening minute to take the lead. But the work at the other end of the floor is what made the difference. The Broncos held the Warriors without a field goal for nearly nine minutes, as Hawai’i started the second stanza 0-for-10 from the floor.

Boise State built as much as a 24-point lead in the second half, and held on for the win.

The victory was just the third on the islands in 10 trips for the Broncos, and Boise State notched its first conference road sweep since knocking off San Jose State (74-68; Feb. 28) and Hawai’i (78-71; March 1) during the final road trip of the 2007-08 season.

Anderson’s performance followed his career-high 31-point effort in the Broncos’ 102-101 quadruple overtime victory over San Jose State Thursday. He went 7-of-12 from the floor against the Warriors, including a career-high five 3-pointers.

Bropleh also added a career-high eight rebounds to lead the Broncos, and Daequon Montreal added 10 points and seven rebounds.

With the victory the Broncos are now set for a first-place showdown with Utah State Thursday (Jan. 13) at Taco Bell Arena. The only two remaining undefeated teams in the league are set to square off at 8:15 p.m., and the game will follow the Bronco women’s game against San Jose State.

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