BOISE, Idaho (11/19/2015) - Boise State fell in the final minute 72-70 to Utah Valley Thursday night in Taco Bell Arena. The game was a battle throughout as there were 21 lead changes and nine ties, the largest lead in the second half was five by Boise State with 5:12 left in the fourth quarter.
The loss is the first of the season for Boise State who fell to 2-1 on the year. The Broncos will be on the road next week when they travel to the San Juan Shootout in Puerto Rico to face Auburn and Stetson Nov. 27-28.
Boise State had a chance to ice the game with 20 seconds left by inbounding the ball at mid-court up 70-69. But the Broncos could not control the inbound pass as the Wolverines knocked it loose and recovered the ball to score on a layup for a 71-70 lead with 12 seconds left.
The Broncos then missed a shot on their next possession and where forced to foul on the rebound with seven seconds remaining. Mariah Seals stepped to the line and made one of two free throws.
After a couple timeouts by both teams with 4.2 seconds left, Boise State brought the ball down court with Yaiza Rodriguez Ortego pulling up for the shot from the top of the arc only to have it blocked as time ran out.
"We called a screen down play at the end of the game for Yaiza (Rodriguez Ortego) but we didn't throw that pass and Marta (Hermida) came out but didn't run to the ball and they got the steal," said head coach Gordy Presnell. "We have to be more aggressive, when one team shoots 25 free throws and the other shoots eight it was our lack of aggressiveness driving to the basket to get fouled and get to the free-throw line. We just didn't do that."
Brooke Pahukoa led Boise State with a season-high 22 points on 9-of-21 shooting from the floor with four 3-pointers. She also tallied five rebounds, four assists, one block and one steal in 35 minutes of action.
"We just lost so it really doesn't matter to me that I made my shots," Brooke Pahukoa said. "I would of rather made that last shot that might of got the win for us or made one last stop. I think it was really good for us (the game going back and forth in the second half). I think we showed competitiveness and we needed a close game to experience things when they go wrong. I think this game will help us latter in the year, but it is hard to swallow now."
Pahukoa was one of four Broncos in double-figure scoring followed by Shalen Shaw with 17 points, tied for team-high with eight rebounds, four assists and team-best four steals.
Miquelle Askew added 10 points, eight rebounds, two blocks and one steal. Rodriguez Ortego recording 10 points, one rebound, five assists and one steal.
Utah Valley opened the game by taking an 9-4 lead at 6:38 in the first quarter. Boise State rallied with 9-0 run with three treys, two by Brooke Pahukoa and one by Shaw, for a 13-9 lead at 4:30. The period ended tied at 13.
The second quarter saw Boise State roll off a 13-5 run to take a 26-18 lead at the 4:35 mark of the period. UVU then rallied with a 11-6 run to close within three, 32-29, at the half.
Pahukoa scored eight points in first quarter and finished the half with 12 on 5-of-11 shooting from the floor with two 3-pointers.
The second half was tight with the Wolverines opening the third quarter rolling off a 13-6 run to go up 42-38 at the 6:22 mark. The teams then traded mini runs for the last 16 minutes of the game setting up the final minute's decisive series of plays that saw Utah Valley hold on for the win.
Boise State shot 40 percent from the floor (28-of-70), 30 percent (7-of-23) from beyond the arc and 87.5 percent (7-of-8) from the free-throw line.
For the first time this year Boise State was dominated on the glass as UVU out rebounded the Broncos 46-to-38 and 18-to-13 in offensive boards.
Utah Valley finished hitting 39 percent (25-of-64) from the floor, 42 percent (5-of-12) from the arc and 68 percent (17-of-25) from the free-throw line. The difference in the game was the free throw shooting as the Wolverines continually drove inside where they were fouled on shots and converted on 17 of their free throw attempts.