UTAHST
SJST

No Text

No. 25 Utah St tops San Jose St 71-59 in conference opener

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) With star center Neemias Queta sidelined by a knee injury early this season, former walk-on Justin Bean has shouldered the load inside for Utah State.

Bean had 18 points and 14 rebounds for his fourth straight double-double, and No. 25 Utah State bounced back from its first loss by beating San Jose State 71-59 on Wednesday night in the Mountain West Conference opener.

''He went from the guy who was on the scout team every day and kept proving his merit,'' coach Craig Smith said. ''Down the stretch last year, he didn't start but he finished most games. He's always been an excellent rebounder. He just has a nose for the ball. He just consistently gets better. He's a better shooter and better handler.''

Bean started fast by scoring the first eight points for the Aggies and kept up his strong play throughout for a Utah State team that was a bit worn down from spending 14 of the past 18 days away from home.

''Everyone is pretty fatigued,'' Bean said. ''But we're tough, a tough group. We're probably more undersized than most teams, definitely more undersized than what we thought coming into this year. But this team has heart.''

The Aggies (8-1, 1-0) fell 81-73 last week at Saint Mary's in a matchup between two of the top mid-major teams in the country. They fared much better in their return to the Bay Area by running away from the Spartans (3-6, 0-1) in the second half.

Utah State used a 9-0 spurt fueled by two baskets by Alphonso Anderson and five turnovers from San Jose State to build an 11-point lead early in the second half and mostly coasted from there.

''We just kind of chipped away in the second half and gradually extended,'' Smith said. ''It certainly wasn't easy.''

Sam Merrill scored 14 points, Anderson added 12 and Diogo Brito had 10 for the Aggies.

Seneca Knight scored 17 points to lead the Spartans, who have lost four straight games. San Jose State hasn't beaten a ranked team since knocking off No. 19 Alabama 60-59 in overtime in the Cable Car Classic on Dec. 27, 1996.

''We're not afraid,'' coach Jean Prioleau said. ''We're going to put our feet forward and put our nose into the fight. I'm going to do everything in my power to change this around, change the culture of men's basketball at San Jose State.''

The Spartans stayed close early with the Aggies, getting a spark when Omari Moore blocked two shots by Brock Miller on one trip. That led to a tying 3-pointer from Trey Smith and a basket from Richard Washington that put San Jose State up 21-19.

The Aggies answered and led 36-33 at the break.

BIG PICTURE

Utah State: The Aggies controlled the game inside and outscored the Spartans 46-22 in the paint. But they shot only 4 of 17 on 3-pointers and failed to completely pull away from an overmatched opponent.

San Jose State: After going 8-53 with only two conference wins in Prioleau's first two seasons, the Spartans look to be a little more competitive in year three. But they still have a long way to go to match up with any of the top teams in the conference.

UP NEXT

Utah State: Hosts Fresno State on Saturday.

San Jose State: Visits San Diego State on Sunday.

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Key Players
S. Merrill
5 G
S. Knight
13 G
26.1 Min. Per Game 26.1
11.3 Pts. Per Game 11.3
2.1 Ast. Per Game 2.1
5.0 Reb. Per Game 5.0
40.6 Field Goal % 40.0
45.5 Three Point % 26.5
83.9 Free Throw % 65.9
+ 3 Seneca Knight made 3-pt. jump shot 24.0
+ 1 Abel Porter made 2nd of 2 free throws 31.0
+ 1 Abel Porter made 1st of 2 free throws 31.0
  Shooting foul on Richard Washington 31.0
+ 2 Seneca Knight made layup, assist by Brae Ivey 32.0
+ 2 Diogo Brito made layup 44.0
  Defensive rebound by Abel Porter 53.0
  Seneca Knight missed layup 55.0
+ 1 Abel Porter made 2nd of 2 free throws 1:03
+ 1 Abel Porter made 1st of 2 free throws 1:03
  Shooting foul on Richard Washington 1:03
Team Stats
Points 71 59
Field Goals 28-66 (42.4%) 21-49 (42.9%)
3-Pointers 4-17 (23.5%) 8-21 (38.1%)
Free Throws 11-20 (55.0%) 9-15 (60.0%)
Total Rebounds 42 34
Offensive 11 3
Defensive 24 27
Team 7 4
Assists 9 14
Steals 10 2
Blocks 3 9
Turnovers 6 14
Fouls 17 17
Technicals 0 0
18 PTS, 14 REB, 1 AST
17 PTS, 6 REB, 2 AST
12T
away team logo 25 Utah State 8-1 363571
home team logo San Jose State 3-6 332659
Team Stats
away team logo 25 Utah State 8-1 79.9 PPG 46.6 RPG 15.8 APG
home team logo San Jose State 3-6 64.7 PPG 40.3 RPG 13.3 APG
Key Players
34
J. Bean F 15.0 PPG 11.6 RPG 2.4 APG 51.4 FG%
13
S. Knight G 12.6 PPG 5.0 RPG 2.3 APG 44.6 FG%
Top Scorers
J. Bean F 18 PTS 14 REB 1 AST
S. Knight G 17 PTS 6 REB 2 AST
42.4 FG% 42.9
23.5 3PT FG% 38.1
55.0 FT% 60.0
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
J. Bean 18 14 1 9/15 0/0 0/1 3 37 3 2 0 6 8
S. Merrill 14 2 3 5/14 1/4 3/6 3 34 2 0 1 0 2
B. Miller 7 5 0 3/8 1/4 0/0 1 32 1 0 0 2 3
A. Porter 5 4 3 0/5 0/2 5/6 2 30 2 0 1 0 4
T. Dorius 4 2 0 2/4 0/0 0/0 2 13 0 1 0 0 2
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
J. Bean 18 14 1 9/15 0/0 0/1 3 37 3 2 0 6 8
S. Merrill 14 2 3 5/14 1/4 3/6 3 34 2 0 1 0 2
B. Miller 7 5 0 3/8 1/4 0/0 1 32 1 0 0 2 3
A. Porter 5 4 3 0/5 0/2 5/6 2 30 2 0 1 0 4
T. Dorius 4 2 0 2/4 0/0 0/0 2 13 0 1 0 0 2
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
A. Anderson 12 3 0 5/11 1/3 1/3 3 25 1 0 4 3 0
D. Brito 10 5 2 4/9 1/4 1/2 2 23 1 0 0 0 5
S. Bairstow 1 0 0 0/0 0/0 1/2 1 6 0 0 0 0 0
K. Stall - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Anthony - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R. Grootfaam - - - - - - - - - - - - -
N. Queta - - - - - - - - - - - - -
K. Karwowski - - - - - - - - - - - - -
L. McChesney - - - - - - - - - - - - -
C. Bischoff - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 71 35 9 28/66 4/17 11/20 17 200 10 3 6 11 24
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
S. Knight 17 6 2 6/9 3/5 2/3 1 30 0 1 1 0 6
C. Anigwe 8 6 0 3/5 1/3 1/3 2 31 0 1 0 1 5
B. Ivey 6 0 3 2/4 2/4 0/0 3 22 0 0 1 0 0
S. Japhet-Mathias 4 3 0 2/4 0/1 0/0 2 10 0 1 3 0 3
O. Moore 4 2 5 1/4 0/0 2/2 1 28 1 4 4 0 2
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
S. Knight 17 6 2 6/9 3/5 2/3 1 30 0 1 1 0 6
C. Anigwe 8 6 0 3/5 1/3 1/3 2 31 0 1 0 1 5
B. Ivey 6 0 3 2/4 2/4 0/0 3 22 0 0 1 0 0
S. Japhet-Mathias 4 3 0 2/4 0/1 0/0 2 10 0 1 3 0 3
O. Moore 4 2 5 1/4 0/0 2/2 1 28 1 4 4 0 2
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
R. Washington 6 5 0 2/10 0/5 2/3 3 25 0 0 0 1 4
C. LeCesne 6 2 1 3/6 0/0 0/0 0 16 0 1 0 0 2
I. Nichols 5 0 0 1/1 1/1 2/2 0 1 0 0 0 0 0
T. Smith 3 1 0 1/2 1/2 0/0 1 12 0 0 0 0 1
Z. Chappell 0 1 3 0/2 0/0 0/0 2 17 1 0 4 0 1
R. Agee 0 4 0 0/2 0/0 0/2 1 8 0 1 1 1 3
C. Simmons - - - - - - - - - - - - -
K. Hammonds - - - - - - - - - - - - -
H. Dhaliwal - - - - - - - - - - - - -
E. Lane - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 59 30 14 21/49 8/21 9/15 17 200 2 9 14 3 27