12 Second Half Threes Lead Utah State Over Colorado State

Feb 4, 2023, 8:13 PM | Updated: 8:21 pm
Steven Ashworth - Utah State Aggies...
Utah State guard Steven Ashworth (Courtesy of USU Athletics)
(Courtesy of USU Athletics)

LOGAN, Utah – It was raining in Fort Collins as Utah State made 12 second-half threes on their way to an 88-79 road win against Colorado State.

Utah State (19-5, 8-3) traveled to Fort Collins, CO where they took on the Colorado State Rams (10-14, 2-9) on Saturday, February 4.

The Aggies came in riding a two-game winning streak with victories at Fresno State and home against New Mexico.

In their last game, the Rams saw their losing streak climb to four games with an 83-71 loss at home against UNLV.

Steven Ashworth tied a career-high with eight threes on his way to a team-high 26 points. Taylor Funk scored 21 with five made threes. Sean Bairstow and Dan Akin each added 11 points.

Isaiah Stevens scored 25 points to lead the Rams. John Tonje added 20 points in the loss.

RELATED: Utah State Beats New Mexico In Convincing Fashion

First Half

In the blink of an eye, Utah State opened up a 9-2 advantage with threes on their first three possessions.

Sean Bairstow assisted Max Shulga on the first shot of the game. After a Colorado State miss, USU took advantage of a second-chance scoring opportunity when Taylor Funk knocked down his first shot of the game.

After Isaiah Stevens hit a mid-range jumper, Bairstow answered off a pass from Funk.

The best three-point shooting team in the Mountain West at 41.5 percent, USU’s first six shots came from range. Utah State made four threes in the first four minutes of game time to take a 13-4 lead into the first timeout.

RELATED: Utah State Must Take Care Of Business At Home For NCAA Tournament Birth

After a torrid start, the Aggies fell into an all too familiar scoring drought. Utah State was held scoreless for a 5:34 stretch.

CSU capitalized, using a 16-0 scoring run to take an 18-13 lead with 11:58 left.

USU got off the schneid when RJ Eytle-Rock found Trevin Dorius for a dunk with 11:43 left.

The Rams would go on to miss five straight shots, allowing the Aggies to take a 21-20 lead after Dorius made a pair of free throws.

Both teams traded punches in the closing minutes of the half, combining for three ties and eight lead changes in the first half alone.

Utah State took a 33-32 lead into the break.

Second Half

The Aggies drew first blood in the second half when Ashworth buried a second-chance three off of an assist from Bairstow.

After Isaiah Rivera hit a short floater, Ashworth made his fourth three of the night to give Utah State a 39-34 lead with 17:31 left.

Ashworth came into the game leading the Mountain West with 3.3 triples per game on 47.5 percent shooting.

A 5-0 run from Funk extended the Aggie lead to 44-36 with 15:58 to go.

RELATED: Without Rylan Jones Healthy, Aggies Ceiling Remains Limited

Minutes later, Funk stayed hot by knocking down a corner three. The basket gave Funk a team-high 18 points and 10 in the second half alone.

Trailing 57-50, CSU’s Robert Tonje sent Akin to the foul line. It was the fourth foul for Tonje, sending him to the bench for an extended period. After Akin hit both free throws, Aggie sophomore guard Zee Hamoda forced a steal and knocked down a three on the ensuing possession to give Utah State their largest lead at 62-50 with 9:50 left.

The Aggies held on down the stretch, not allowing Colorado State within less than six points again. Utah State finished with an 88-79 win, improving to 19-5 on the year.

Up Next

Utah State returns home for an important matchup against the No. 22 San Diego State Aztecs (18-5, 9-2) on Wednesday, February 8. Tip-off for this game is scheduled for 8 p.m. (MST) USU will be looking to even the season series with the Aztecs after falling 85-75 at SDSU on January 25.

Every Utah State basketball game can be heard on the KSL Sports Zone with Scott Garrard on the call.

Coverage of Utah State University Athletics from KSL Sports can be found here. 

  • Utah State Aggies Scoreboard

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12 Second Half Threes Lead Utah State Over Colorado State