Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Utah basketball: Utes soak up first Pac-12 victory
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The Utes, rightly, had an easier time explaining the significance of an overtime win over Washington State than a 40-point loss at Colorado.

"It was a big for Utah and Utah's history, the first Pac-12 win at home," junior guard Chris Hines said.

After 13 games in which they consistently broke records for futility, the Utes removed the possibility of another with their 62-60 win over Washington State: They won't become just the second team in Pac-10/12 history to go 0-18.

"This win took a lot off our shoulders," junior Cedric Martin said.

After the Utes' performance at Colorado, it seemed almost laughable when Washington State coach Ken Bone said this week that, "Utah is good enough to beat us."

The Utes entered the game as a 17-point underdog — against a team, keep in mind, that was picked to finish in a 10th-place tie in the preseason.

But the Utes proved more resilient than they demonstrated earlier in the season.

Then again, almost everything about Thursday's victory was better than any part of the season to that point.

"It couldn't have been scripted any better for our first [home conference] game," Larry Krystkowiak said. "The blackout game and having some warriors and having an overtime — it's pretty neat."

While no one might have predicted a win given the Utes' trajectory this season, Krystkowiak said he believed the Utes turned a corner this week in practice.

"Sometimes you have a little bit of a gut feeling, and I'd be lying if I said that I didn't," Krystkowiak said. "I knew that we were going to play hard and that's the part that was fun. I mentioned it to our coaches at our pregame meal."

He even texted with his brother Bernie, who lives near Kalispell, Mont.

"He said he was having good vibes," Krystkowiak said, "and I said, 'Yeah, I'm kind of feeling the same thing.' "

After Josh Watkins made his second clutch elbow jumper of the night — one to force overtime, the other to win it in the extra period — the Utes exploded on the court.

On Washington State's next possession, the Cougars turned the ball over. The Utes inbounded with 1.5 seconds remaining and Watkins threw the ball toward the rafters.

He was mobbed by his teammates. They were all feeling the same thing, too.

boram@sltrib.com

Twitter: @oramb

Article Tools

 Print Friendly
Photos
 
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.