UTAH STATE AGGIES

Aggies Suffer 2nd Half Shooting Slump In Beehive Classic Loss To BYU

Dec 14, 2019, 9:11 PM | Updated: 11:48 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Utah State Aggies suffered a shooting slump during the second half in the Beehive Classic that they couldn’t overcome and it resulted in a loss to the BYU Cougars.

Utah State was defeated by BYU 68-64 at Vivint Smart Home Arena on Saturday, December 14.

After Abel Porter made a layup with 13:09 left in the game, the Aggies missed 12 consecutive field goals until Sam Merrill connected on a jumper with 5:29 remaining. During the seven minutes stretch, Utah State’s only points came on three made free throws.

“They just made a couple of more plays than we did. I’m proud of how hard we fought,” said Utah State head coach Craig Smith after the loss. “We were down nine or ten or whatever it was and gave ourselves every opportunity to win but just couldn’t find a way to get the ball in the hole down the stretch. Had a couple of chips shots in the there and it just didn’t go but what a great game. I think it’s a great game for the state. I think it’s a great game for everyone that’s a part of it.

The Aggies struggled to make shots against a suffocating defensive performance by BYU.

Merrill was held to 11 points on 2-10 from the field and 0-4 from three-point range. He was the only player on either team to play the entire game. He added 8 rebounds and 3 assists in the four point loss.

Aggie forward Justin Bean struggled with foul trouble in the first half sat on the bench for the majority of play before halftime. He failed to post a double-double for the first time since November 18 with 8 points and 10 boards against BYU.

Diogo Brito was held to 2 points and 0-5 on field goals in 26 minutes of play.

The Cougars connected on 47.7 percent of their attempts while Utah State was limited to 40 percent shooting on the night.

Utah State went 6-21 for 28.6 percent behind the arc.

The loss was the Aggies’ second of the season. As a result, Utah State moved to 10-2 on the season. BYU improved to 9-4 on the year.

USU plays another neutral site game against their next opponent, the South Florida Bulls (5-4), on Wednesday, December 18. USF and Utah State will tip-off at the home of the NBA’s Houston Rockets, the Toyota Center, at 5:45 p.m. (MDT) on ESPN3.

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