Utah State turns up the defense, pulls away from Northern Colorado for 63-50 victory

Aggies shake off the rust after having two games canceled due to a coronavirus outbreak.

File photo courtesy USU athletics: Utah State men's basketball coach Craig Smith poses on the court inside the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum in Logan. Smith led the Aggies to a 63-50 victory over visiting Northern Colorado on Friday, Dec. 18, 2020.

Logan • Utah State returned to the court for the first time since having its previous two games canceled due to COVID-19 protocols, and the 10-day layoff definitely had an effect on the Aggies.

But not enough to keep them from posting a victory in head coach Craig Smith’s return to the bench.

Redshirt junior guard Marco Anthony scored 19 points and junior forward Justin Bean had a double-double with 12 points and a game-high 11 rebounds as the Aggies pulled away for a 63-50 win over Northern Colorado in a nonconference men’s basketball game Friday night at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.

“I thought it was a great game for the Aggies,” said Smith, who hadn’t coached Utah State (3-3) since Nov. 27, missing two games, after testing positive for the coronavirus. “Northern Colorado is good. They have a winning pedigree and a winning culture. They’ve been really good the last four or five years, so they understand how to win.”

Daylen Kountz led the Bears (3-2) with 13 points, six rebounds and two blocks, while Kur Jockuch added 11 points and Bodie Hume chipped in 10.

Following a defensive rebound by Hume and a Jockuch layup at the other end of the court, Northern Colorado found itself up 36-32 with 16:06 to go in the game.

The Aggies ratcheted up their defense and held the Bears to just 10 points over the next 14-plus minutes. During that game-changing stretch, Northern Colorado committed six turnovers and made three of its 17 shots from the field.

Comments:  (0)