Men's Basketball Suffers Loss to Washington State Wednesday Night
PULLMAN, Wash. – The University of Utah men's basketball team couldn't find its rhythm Wednesday night as it fell to Washington State 71-54 inside Beasley Coliseum.
The Utes drew blood first on The Palouse with Dusan Mahorcic getting an easy bucket in the paint before the big man found his fellow Serbian on the next possession for the 4-0 start. Back-to-back triples from Lazar Stefanovic tied things up (12-12) heading in the 11:56 media break before both teams struggled to find the bottom of the basket.
Down 18-14, Marco Anthony found a diving Branden Carlson for the two-handed jam on the press break. Turnovers once again plagued the Utes (8-13, 1-10 Pac-12) as they headed into the final media timeout (3:49) trailing 25-19 before heading into the locker room down 33-25 thanks to three-straight free throws from Rollie Worster with 3.5 ticks left on the clock.
The second frame didn't start so well for the Utes as the Cougars opened with an 18-6 run to go ahead 51-31 and forced a Utah timeout (13:08). Carlson ended the scoring drought out of the 11:47 media timeout when he hit the second of his two free throws before Worster's drive to the rack gave Utah its first field goal in 4:15 minutes.
Utah got a short 8-0 run going after Worster connected on and-1 play to bring the Utes within 55-42 before Washington State answered with an 8-2 run of its own to force another Utah timeout with 4:41 left to play. The Utes didn't give up but they weren't able make the come back and fell 71-54 Wednesday night to the Cougs (11-7, 4-3 Pac-12).
BY THE NUMBERS
Carlson made his return to the line-up after sitting out the last five games due to an appendectomy, checking in at the 15:53 media timeout in first half … David Jenkins Jr's 3-pointer at the 3:21 mark was his first points since scoring 14 at Arizona State … the nine-game losing streak ties the longest in program history – which last occurred during the 1935-36 campaign.
The Utes will get an extra day to prepare for Washington, who they will face on Saturday, Jan. 29, at 3 p.m. (MT) on Pac-12 Networks inside Alaska Airlines Arena with Roxy Bernstein and Eldridge Recasner on the call to close out the PNW road swing.
For the latest news and information on the Runnin' Utes men's basketball program, fans can stay connected online at www.UtahUtes.com and on social media by following @UtahMBB on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.