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Boise State basketball ends skid with 70-67 win over Utah State

Boise State junior forward Nick Duncan pump fakes and looks to pass Saturday against New Mexico. He had a team-high 19 points in the loss.
Boise State junior forward Nick Duncan pump fakes and looks to pass Saturday against New Mexico. He had a team-high 19 points in the loss.

Guard Lonnie Jackson's 3-pointer with 1:31 to play gave Boise State its first lead of the game, and the Broncos held on for the 70-67 win at Taco Bell Arena on Tuesday.

Forward James Webb III led Boise State with 19 points and nine rebounds, 17 points coming in the second half as Boise State (16-7, 7-3) avoided dropping a third straight game. The Broncos dominated the boards, outrebounding the Aggies 39-22, including 17 offensive rebounds. Boise State led 18-0 in second chance points. The Aggies (11-10, 3-7) shot 54.5 percent (12-of-22) from 3-point range in the loss.

After allowing New Mexico to shoot 56.5 percent in the second half of Saturday's 88-83 loss, the Broncos saw Utah State shoot 55.6 percent in the first half Tuesday. The Aggies led by 13 late in the first half and by 11 with 10 minutes to play, but made just 3-of-10 field goals afterward.

Forward Chris Smith had 20 points to pace Utah State, which has lost four straight.

Halftime: Following a brutal second half Saturday in a loss to New Mexico, Boise State put up another stinker Tuesday against Utah State, trailing 38-28 at the break.

The Aggies shot 55.6 percent in the first half (15-of-27), while the Broncos shot 34.4 percent (11-of-32). Seniors Anthony Drmic and Mikey Thompson were 3-for-4 apiece from the field, the rest of the team was 5-of-24.

Boise State has 12 turnovers in the first half and were on the wrong side of a 14-7 run to end the half after cutting the Aggies’ lead to 24-21 with 7:55 to the half.

Pregame: Boise State hopes to get back on the winning track at 7 p.m. Tuesday against Utah State at Taco Bell Arena. Boise State (15-7, 6-3) defeated Utah State (11-9, 3-6) on Jan. 5 in Logan, using a big second half in a 76-61 win.

If the Broncos want to get their goal of a Mountain title, they will need to improve its defense in the second half of the conference slate. Boise State came into the week 245th in the nation in field goal percentage defense, put into focus during its two-game losing streak.

Forward Jalen Moore and Chris Smith lead the Aggies with 14.9 ppg and 14.3 ppg, respectively. The Broncos gave freshman center Robin Jorch his first start Tuesday.

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