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Runnin' Utes close out nonconference play with win over College of Idaho

Runnin' Utes close out nonconference play with win over College of Idaho

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SALT LAKE CITY — The Runnin' Utes ran away with a 72-38 win over the College of Idaho Friday night at the Jon M. Huntsman Center, closing out nonconference play with an 8-4 record.

Jordan Loveridge led Utah with 15 points and 10 rebounds, recording his third double-double of the season. Brandon Taylor, a fellow true freshman, added 14 points off the bench on 5-of-5 shooting, including 4-for-4 from beyond the arc.

"(Loveridge) is making a solid progression," said Utah head coach Larry Krystkowiak. "(Taylor) has come in and given us a big lift in a couple games."


The Utes got off to a sluggish start, leading just 16-12 after the first 10 sloppy minutes.

But Taylor entered the game to spark a 14-0 run, knocking down two 3-pointers during that stretch. The run stretched to 21-8 to close out the half with the Utes on top, 37-20.

Utah continued its roll on the other side of the half, jumping out of the gates with a 14-3 run after the intermission, capped by a third Taylor 3-point shot. The Utes kept it going until the final buzzer, closing the contest with a 13-2 rally, topped off once again with a 3-ball from Taylor.

Over the course of the night, Utah shot 49 percent from the floor and 50 percent from downtown, as well as 81 percent from the free throw line. The College of Idaho shot just 23 percent from the game.

Jason Washburn made his first start since being removed from the starting lineup on Nov. 21. The senior center finished the game with 10 points and four boards.

"It wasn't a big deal to me personally when Dallin (Bachynski) was named the starter," said Washburn. "Obviously starting is good and it's fun, but I tried to come in with the same aggressive mindset, trying to attack the rim and get myself going right off the bat. It seemed to work tonight."

"I talked to Washburn about it, and the fact that he was taken out of the starting lineup didn't mean that I didn't think he was one of the most productive "5" men we have," Krystkowiak said. "When he did come off the bench he played as well as he has ever played. I know Washburn is going to be steady in terms of coming in and doing his thing. I just think (starting Washburn) was the best decision for our team and at the end of the day, no one's feelings are going to be hurt."

The Utes tallied 20 assists on 26 made field goals, led by Jarred DuBois' eight dimes. He also registered seven points and six rebounds on the night.

The Yotes were led by sophomore guard Sydney Donaldson, who ended up with 10 points, four rebounds and three blocks. Junior forwards Antonio Garrett and Taylor Pruett each added nine points for the College of Idaho, which was formerly called Albertson College — in honor of the grocery store chain owner, Joe Albertson, who donated several millions of dollars to the college. The NAIA school falls to 7-9 on the season with the loss.

The College of Idaho's 38 points amounted to the lowest point total allowed by Utah under Krystkowiak, and the lowest allowed by the program since a 57-36 victory at Air Force in January of 2009.

Utah closes out its nonconference slate with an 8-4 record, showing vast improvements from last season's 3-9 nonconference outing.

"I know everyone came back really focused after Christmas," Krystkowiak said. "We aren't that far away from having a record like a lot of teams in (the Pac-12) have now."

The Utes will open Pac-12 conference play Jan. 2 at Arizona State, looking for their first ever Pac-12 conference road win — having gone 0-9 in Pac-12 road contests last season. Utah will follow that game up with a Jan. 5 matchup at Arizona, before hosting its first Pac-12 game of the season against UCLA on Jan. 10.

Tyson Maddy has covered the University of Utah football and men's basketball teams as a contributing writer for Sports since 2011. Follow his Utes coverage on twitter @Tyson_Maddy

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