BOISE, Idaho Matt Nelson and Anthony Thomas combined for 46 points to lead Boise State to a 73-62 Western Athletic Conference win over Hawaii in front of 10,190 fans at Taco Bell Arena, the 26th largest crowd to see a Bronco game in the building.
Nelson scored a season-high 25 points, just one shy of his career mark set while he was playing at Eastern Washington, while grabbing 10 rebounds. The junior converted on 9-of-13 shots from the field and 7-of-12 from the free throw line.
Thomas, a freshman, scored a career-high 21 points, making 5-of-8 from the floor and 11-of-11 from the line. He matched his season high playing 26 minutes, sparking the Broncos offense.
Junior Reggie Larry added seven points, 11 rebounds and three blocked shots for the Broncos, who outscored Hawaii (10-9, 1-5 WAC) 42-22 in the paint. The Broncos (9-8, 3-3 WAC) also outscored the Rainbow Warriors 25-5 in bench points.
Hawaii jumped to an early five point lead, but Boise State went on a 21-9 run to take the lead for good midway through the first half. The Broncos hit on 47.8 percent of their shots before the break compared to just 32.3 percent by the Rainbow Warriors.
The Broncos finished shooting 52.3 percent from the floor and 75.8 percent from the line, while Hawaii made just 33.8 percent of its shots and 14.3 percent of its 3-pointers.
The win moved Boise State’s record to 8-1 in Taco Bell Arena this season. The Broncos host Fresno State on Thursday night. Tickets are $4 for adults and kids under 12 are free when accompanied by an adult.