FRESNO, Calif. - Even though their leading scorer did not make a field goal, the Boise State Broncos found a way to win another vital game.
Derrick Marks, who came into Saturday's game at the Save Mart Center leading Boise State with 16.5 points per game, scored five points, but other weapons were firing as the Broncos won their second Mountain West men's basketball road game of the season, defeating Fresno State 72-63.
"It shows that we have a lot of guys who can do a lot of things to help us win," Boise State guard Jeff Elorriaga said. "We're starting to make the plays that other teams made against us last year."
Marks did not make a field goal on three attempts in 28 minutes, but he had five rebounds and seven assists, giving him 16 in his past two games. He only had one turnover, and assisted on four of Elorriaga's six 3-pointers Saturday.
"He's uniquely unselfish for how good of a scorer he is," Boise State coach Leon Rice said.
The Broncos (18-8, 6-6 MW) picked up the scoring slack with 20-point games from Anthony Drmic and Elorriaga. Drmic had 25 of his game-high 28 points in the second half, making 12-of-15 free throws in the game. He was 8-of-9 on two-point field goals.
"I don't think I've ever scored more than 15 points without having made a 3," Drmic said. "The coaches have harped on me to drive to the basket more, and I was able to do that (Saturday)."
The duo combined for the Broncos' first 18 points of the second half as they opened the final frame on a 20-5 run after trailing 26-25 at halftime. Elorriaga, who had 20 points, hit three 3-pointers in a row during a 14-0 run.
"Those first few minutes after the half are always key, it really sets the tone - we got hot, and we made stops, which you have to do if you want to win on the road," Elorriaga said.
Aiding the run was a defensive effort that forced the Bulldogs (9-17, 3-10) into 1-of-10 shooting to open the second half. They did not make a field goal for the first 6:23.
Fresno State did not go quietly, cutting Boise State's game-high 18-point lead with 10:51 to play down to six with 2 minutes, 16 seconds to play, but the Broncos made their free throws down the stretch, making 7-of-8 in the last 2:11, and finishing 25-of-31 at the line on the night.
"The guys did a way better job of attacking the basket in the second half," said Rice, whose team made 26-of-26 free throws the first time the two teams met, on Jan. 23.
Boise State doubled its conference win total last season with Saturday's win and is now tied for fifth in the Mountain West standings with Air Force. The Broncos return home Wednesday to face Nevada, which defeated Boise State 75-59 on Jan. 26.
"We're back to .500, got a big road win, and hopefully we can keep it rolling against Nevada, try to finish in the top four," Drmic said.
NOTE: The Boise State athletic department announced Saturday night that the Broncos will wear all-black uniforms for their game next Saturday against Colorado State at Taco Bell Arena.
Dave Southorn: 377-6420, Twitter: @IDS_southorn