Men's Basketball Set for Sunday Afternoon Showdown at Washington
SEATTLE – The Utah men's basketball team looks to build on its road victory Thursday night this Sunday, Jan. 24, when it battles host Washington for a 2 p.m. (MT) showdown inside Alaska Airlines Arena on ESPNU.
Roxy Bernstein will have the call as the Runnin' Utes look to sweep the Huskies in the season series this Sunday while former Arizona Wildcat Corey Williams serves as the analyst in the 28th overall meeting between the two programs. The last time the Utes swept the Washington schools on the road was back in 2017-18.
With its 71-56 win over Washington State Thursday night, Utah was able to get the proverbial monkey off its back and snapped the 12-game losing-streak on the road in Pac-12 play. Coincidentally, the last time the Utes won a road game in conference play was at WSU on Feb. 23, 2019. The win was also Utah's first true road victory since defeating Nevada in the 2019-20 season-opener, on Nov. 5, 2019 – which was a 13-game losing skid that got snapped with Thursday's win.
Sophomore Rylan Jones answered his critics on Thursday at Washington State, dishing out a season-high 10 assists to go with his five points and three rebounds. The Holladay, Utah, product became just the fifth player in Pac-12 play this season to register double-digit assists, joining Tyger Campbell (UCLA), Drew Peterson (USC), Ziaire Williams (Stanford) and McKinley Wright IV (Colorado).
CARLSON ANSWERS THE CALL
After coming off the bench the last four games, sophomore big man Branden Carlson moved back into the starting line-up against Washington State and played his best game of the season thus far. The South Jordan, Utah, native opened the game for Utah with back-to-back baskets before finishing with the first double-double for Utah this season with 14 points and 10 rebounds. The 10 rebounds was the most by any Ute this season and first double-double for the Utes since Timmy Allen's against USC on Feb. 23, 2020.
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This was just the second career double-double for the sophomore. His first came last season against Stanford (Feb. 6, 2020) at home when he nearly had a triple-double posting 15 points, 10 rebounds and 8 blocks.
SCHEDULE UPDATE (JAN. 22)
In collaboration with the Pac-12 Conference and affected member institutions, the following schedule updates were announced for the Utah men's basketball team.
The Runnin' Utes will play its postponed game against Arizona State from Dec. 22 now on Tuesday, Feb. 2, at 2 p.m. on Pac-12 Networks in Tempe to wrap up a four-game road swing before returning home.
Utah's originally scheduled game against the Sun Devils inside the Jon M. Huntsman Center on Saturday, Feb. 6, has been pushed back one day and will now be played at Noon (MT) on Super Bowl Sunday (Feb. 7) on the Pac-12 Networks.
In addition, Utah's postponed game against Oregon State on Jan. 6 is now slated for Monday, Feb. 22, in Salt Lake City to kick off a four-game homestand to wrap up the regular-season. Barring any other postponements, Utah will have a full week's rest after its Feb. 27 game against USC before heading to Las Vegas for the Pac-12 Tournament (March 10-13).
SCOUTING THE HUSKIES
Mike Hopkins and the Huskies snapped an eight-game losing streak Wednesday night while also picking up their first conference win of the season against visiting Colorado, 84-80, behind a career night from Marcus Tsohonis with 27 points while three other UW players registered double-digit points.
In the last meeting between the Utes and Huskies earlier this season, Utah was able to turn UW over 13 times and converted that into a 23-10 edge. The Utes also went to the foul line 21 times to UW's nine. Alfonso Plummer led Utah with 21 points while Timmy Allen and Mikael Jantunen each added 14 points and 10 points, respectively, with eight rebounds apiece in the win. Quade Green paced Washington with 21 points while Nate Roberts added 12 points.
Green continues to be UW's leading scorer, checking in at 15.1 points per game with a 3.1 rebounding average and 3.5 assists average. Tsohonis (8.2 ppg), Erik Stevenson (8.1 ppg) and Jamal Bey are all within .2 points of one another behind Green. Hameir Wright, who had seven points and 10 rebounds against the Utes on Dec. 3, leads the team with 4.6 rebounds per game to go with his 5.8 points average.
As a team, the Huskies have steadily improved offensively with four players averaging double-figures in their last five games. Tsohonis leads the group averaging 15.5 points with a .512 (22-fo-43) shooting clip after Wednesday night's career-high 27 points off the bench. Green is next on the list, averaging 14.4 points, 3.8 rebounds and 4.4 assists while Stevenson is right behind him averaging 14.2 points and 3.4 rebounds with an impressive .516 (16-of-31) shooting clip from long-range. Bey rounds out the list for Washington with 12.8 points per game and a team-high 4.0 boards per game.
LAST TIME OUT
Utah played its most complete game up to date Thursday on the road against Washington State and snapped its 13-game losing streak on the road. The Runnin' Utes led wire-to-wire and was on top by as much as 21 points in the second-half before capturing the 71-56 victory in Beasley Coliseum.
Five different Utes reached double-figures led by Branden Carlson's double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds on 7-of-12 shooting with a pair of blocks. Riley Battin and Alfonso Plummer each chipped in with 12 points off the bench while Timmy Allen and Mikael Jantunen had 13 points and 10 points, respectively. Meanwhile, point guard Rylan Jones dished out a season-high 10 assists for the Utes and accounted for 10 of the 19 total assists against the Cougars.
Utah will get some time to recharge after the Washington game before flying to Boulder for a 7:30 p.m. (MT) tilt against Colorado on Jan. 30. The last time the Utes picked up a win inside the CU Events Center was back on Feb. 23, 2017.
After the road swing to Boulder, Utah returns home for a pair of games against the Arizona schools the first week of February. Utah will first welcome in the Arizona Wildcats on Thursday, Feb. 4, at 5 p.m. (MT) on FS1 before facing off against the Arizona State Sun Devils on Sunday, Feb. 7.