Tyler Kepkay led Utah with 16 points Monday night at Gonzaga.
Dec. 31, 2007
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) -- Matt Bouldin scored a career high 26 points, including 20 in the second half, as Gonzaga outlasted Utah 61-59 on New Year's Eve.
Bouldin made 8 of 11 shots, including 6-of-8 3-pointers, as Gonzaga (10-4) snapped a two-game losing streak that dropped the Bulldogs from the Top 25. Tyler Kepkay scored 16 points to lead Utah (8-4), which stayed close by making a season high 12-of-27 from 3-point range, but shot just 40 percent in the game.
After leading by one at halftime, the Zags scored the first 10 points of the second half - seven by Bouldin - for a 36-25 lead. Utah answered with a 10-2 run. But Bouldin then hit a pair of 3-pointers during a 12-3 Gonzaga run for a 50-38 lead with seven minutes left.
The Utes kept scoring, but Bouldin made two more 3-pointers to maintain a 56-45 lead. Utah's Nevill then scored three straight layups to cut Gonzaga's lead to 56-51 with 2:07 left.
After Jeremy Pargo scored for the Zags, Johnnie Bryant's long 3-pointer brought the Utes to within 58-54 with 1:03 left. After a Bouldin free throw, Nevill sank a long jumper to cut Gonzaga's lead to 59-56 with 10.3 seconds left.
Utah fouled on the inbound play and Josh Heytvelt sank both free throws for a 61-56 lead with 8.8 seconds left. Bryant hit another 3-pointer with 0.5 seconds remaining to pull Utah within two. But Gonzaga successfully inbounded the ball and ran the last half-second off the clock.
Despite horrendous shooting, the Utes led most of the first half until Gonzaga's Pargo tied the score at 19-19 with 3:36 left. The teams swapped baskets until Pargo's 3-pointer lifted Gonzaga to a 26-25 halftime lead.