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Story by John van Vliet-ISU Sports Information
Box Score PHOTO GALLERY
POCATELLO, Idaho- The Idaho State men's basketball team played a close first half against Weber State but an early second-half run proved to be the difference as the Wildcats beat the Bengals, 70-54 on Monday night at Holt Arena.
Weber State improved to 11-3 and 6-0 in league while the Bengals fell to 3-12 and 2-4 in conference.
Sophomore forward Chris Hansen led ISU in scoring with 15 points, shooting four-of-nine shooting from the field, two-of-four from the 3-point line and five-of-seven from the free throw line. He played 35 minutes.
Senior guard Sherrod Baldwin and junior guard Andre' Hatchett each added 10 points to the Bengal total.
Overall, the Bengals shot 39.6 percent, 19-for-48 from the field. They went two-of-10 from the 3-point line and 14-for-19 from the free throw line. ISU was out-rebounded by Weber State 33-20. Nnamdi Ezenwa led ISU on the boards with five.
ISU took advantage of Weber State's 15 turnovers, converting them into 17 points. Weber State only had five points off of the Bengals' eight turnovers.
“I felt we competed,” Idaho State coach Bill Evans said. “When you take care of the ball that means they are not getting any easy layups. Weber State is a good basketball team. They are 6-0 in conference for a reason.”
In the first half, Idaho State fell behind 14-7 with 11:59 left in the first half. The Bengals then went on an 8-0 run to take a 15-14 lead with 10:26 remaining in the half thanks to six points by Hansen. The Bengals led 21-19 with 4:49 left in the half following another free throw by Hansen. Weber State went into halftime with a 28-26 lead.
The Wildcats started the second half on a 14-4 run to lead 42-30 with 15:11 left in the game.
“They made shots and drove the ball,” Evans said. “We didn't defend like we needed to defend and they got open looks. They made them. They can make shots as they were 10-for-20 from the 3-point line, shot 55 percent from the floor and scored 70 points. If you are going to 70 points against us we are going to have a hard time winning. They are a good team.”
Weber State's largest lead of the game was 16 and ISU got no closer than seven points.
The Bengals return to the court on Thursday, Jan. 17 vs. Sacramento State. Tipoff is at 7 p.m. in Holt Arena.