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Story by Jaime Schroeder-ISU Sports Information
POCATELLO, Idaho – Idaho State (7-7, 2-3 BSC) returned to Reed Gym Saturday and snapped a four-game losing streak with an 80-71 victory over Southern Utah (8-6, 2-2 BSC). Senior guard Abyee Maracigan led the Bengals with her first career double-double as the Tucson, Ariz., native netted a career high 21 points and pulled down 10 rebounds.
“I felt like Abyee did a great job of pacing us in the first half,” ISU Head Coach Seton Sobolewski said. “She had nine points in the first 13 minutes of the game and was just on fire. In the second half, she continued to score a little bit and did a great job on the boards. It was really nice to see her step up.”
Junior guard Lindsey Reed, senior forward Jessa Jeppesen and senior forward Ashleigh Vella also recorded double-figure scoring performances during the evening. Vella posted 16 points and five rebounds while Jeppesen netted 12 points and six rebounds. Reed tallied 11 points with two rebounds and four steals.
Maracigan was on fire in the first 20 minutes of action, fueling a big first half for the Bengals as the 5-9 guard notched 13 points in the first nine minutes of competition. Between the efforts of Maracigan and Jeppesen, who posted all 12 of her points in the first half, ISU jumped out to a demanding 41-18 lead at the half. The 41 first-half points marked the best performance for Idaho State in a half since the second half of the Air Force game on Nov. 17 when ISU put of 50 against the Falcons.
Southern Utah came out aggressively in the second half and tried to make a comeback, outscoring ISU 53-39. However, the Thunderbirds’ first-half deficit was just too much for the team to overcome.
Southern Utah came into the contest as the best offensive rebounding team in the conference and the Bengals held them to just four in the first half. ISU out-rebounded the Thunderbirds, who led the conference in rebound margin (+7.5) 40-35 for the contest.
Defensively, ISU only allowed Southern Utah to make two shots from 3-point range and held SUU to a 43.9 shot percentage overall.
The Bengals performed well from the field as the squad shot 46.3 percent overall and 52.4 percent in the second half. ISU shot an outstanding 52.6 percent from 3-point range thanks in large to Maracigan who sank four of ISU’s 10 in the contest.