November 24, 2015
The Aggies beat Utah Valley University 81-55 and controlled the game throughout. The Aggies were led by Chris Smith and Lew Evans en route to the 26 point victory over the visiting Wolverines. Smith finished with 17 points and 6 rebounds on 7 of 10 shooting. Lew Evans finished with his first career double-double of 15 points and 14 rebounds. As a team, the Aggies showed improvement in shooting, finishing with 54.5% from the field and 40% from the 3-point line, and a much improved 78.9% from the free throw line. The Aggies also dominated the boards with a 46 to 25 advantage.
The bench players contributed 39 points, consistently taking advantage of their opportunities. The bench was also responsible for 28 out of the team’s 46 total rebounds. Said Lew Evans, “I know that I need to go hard to get every rebound.” That seems to be the calling card of him as well as the rest of the players on the team so far this year.
UVU jumped out to an early lead of 10-6 as the Aggies had some lapses on defense. But a tenacious offensive attack led by Chris Smith put Utah State ahead with a 12-1 run with twelve minutes to go in the first half, forcing UVU to call a timeout. This run included a huge alley-oop jam by Jalen Moore. The Aggies extended their lead to 26-16 with 9 minutes left in the first half off of a Lew Evans deep ball. The Aggies went into halftime with a 44-31 lead.
The Aggies were able to come out in the second half and outscore their opponent, something that has been difficult for them in previous games. They outscored UVU in the second half, 37 to 24. Coach Duryea noted “They got out to a fast start… They hit us with some things that we weren’t expecting…But credit to our guys, we made a couple adjustments there.” There were also questionable calls throughout the game. Of those calls, said Coach Duryea, “I think that game had more charging calls than any game in America this year. Two or three of them very questionable, on both sides really.”
Overall, this was a complete performance by the Aggies and they were able to control the game throughout. There still are some issues defensively, as the Aggies have given up several easy layups throughout the game. There also were a lot of turnovers throughout and Coach Duryea said that turnovers are “Our worst stat”. The team has been improving and despite the areas of concern, the Aggies are still undefeated at 4-0. The Aggies are back in action on Sunday against Duke. You can catch the game on ESPNU at 10:30 am.