Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak remained relatively subdued on the sidelines in the first half of Monday night’s game. This came on the heels of a calculated risk by the coach in the Utes’ first-round matchup last week.

Krysktkowiak got ejected for a tirade directed at the officials in the first half of the team’s win over UC Davis in its NIT opener in the Jon M. Huntsman Center on March 14. His outburst sparked the team after a lackluster start, but he also faced the possibility of not being on the bench for what could have been the team’s last game and the final time in a Utah uniform for seniors Gabe Bealer, Justin Bibbins, David Collette and Tyler Rawson.

While the crowd in attendance cheered on Krystkowiak’s explosion against the referees and players credited him after the game for lighting a fire under the team, Krystkowiak was not at all eager to talk about his antics as the team prepared to play LSU in the second round. He certainly wasn’t claiming credit.

“That was like three days ago,” Krystkowiak said on Saturday, after having deflected an initial question about his ejection. “I’m just thrilled that the summer didn’t begin and know that I wasn’t a part of [the last game]. I didn’t want the season to end. I’m really proud of our guys for battling back. Those are my issues with some referees, and I’ll leave it at that. I just want to move forward to LSU.”

The Utes’ win against UC Davis marked their first in an NIT game since 1992, covering a four-game losing streak in the tournament for the program.

A slow start certainly wasn’t a problem for the Utes on Monday night against LSU as they start the game off by making 9 of 10 field goals to take a 22-9 lead to start the game.

The 1,800 club

The Utes’ win against UC Davis in the first round of the NIT gave the program 1,800 all-time wins. The Utes have reached that total in 109 seasons, and they’ve compiled a .644 winning percentage during that span (1,800-991).

Future Utes

Utes junior college signee Charles Jones II, a star point guard for the College of Southern Idaho, began play in the junior college national tournament on Monday. He scored 18 points on 7-of-11 shooting and dished out six assists in 21 minutes during a 119-82 win over Snead State CC. … Four-star recruit Timmy Allen of Red Mountain in Arizona has been named one of eight candidates for the state player of the year by azcentral.com. Allen, a 6-foot-6 wing, averaged 29.8 points, 11.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game as a senior according to The Arizona Republic. Allen signed with the Utes in November.