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Second-half lead slips away from Aggies

Lobos wear down USU for win

assistant sports editor

Published: Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Updated: Wednesday, February 26, 2014 23:02

Jalen Moore

File photo

Freshman Jalen Moore attacks the basket against New Mexico on Tuesday at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum

Utah State nearly grabbed its second conference road win Tuesday against No. 25 New Mexico. The Aggies led for much of the second half of the game, but with just more than six minutes to play, the Lobos took the lead and would not surrender it, winning 67-58.

With the loss, the Aggies drop to 5-11 conference play and to No. 10 in the conference standings just a week and a half away from the Mountain West Tournament. The Aggies have lost four straight games.

Senior guard Preston Medlin did everything he could in the loss, busting out of his scoring slump and racking up 19 points, which led all scorers. Medlin went 4-5 from behind the arc, and the Aggies shot 44.4 percent from three as a team.

“I shot the ball a lot better tonight, and that was a great feeling,” Medlin said. “As of late, I haven’t been shooting the ball very well, so it felt good.”

The Aggies could not contain New Mexico’s big men in the game. Alex Kirk and Cameron Bairstow each had double-doubles in the game, Kirk with 13 points and 12 rebounds and Bairstow with 14 points and 11 rebounds.

“They made it hard for us around the basket,” said USU head coach Stew Morrill. “During that stretch that we couldn’t score we got the down there quite a bit, but we just couldn’t score.”

The Aggies held an 8-point lead with 11:27 to play but they could not hold on. Their scoring went cold and New Mexico caught fire.

“We played about 30 minutes of really good basketball, but the bottom line is we didn’t make shots down the stretch,” Morrill said.

USU goes to San Jose State to take on the Spartans on Saturday, then they finish off their season with a home game against Wyoming.

“We have a lot of guys on this team that are seniors and we don’t want to go out just losing the rest of our games, so we know we are going to play really hard and we’re going to bring it in practice,” Morrill said.

-dahdahjm@gmail.com
Twitter: @dahdahusu

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