Well that sucked.
The Broncos MBB met with another early exit in the Mountain West Conference tournament in a frustrating loss to Utah State.
Chandler Hutchison was only able to play for seven minutes in the first half after getting into early foul trouble. Hutchison only had four points in the first half. While Hutchison did end up in double-digits in points, he ended the game with 14, his late-game heroics fell kind of short. Unfortunately he ended up missing two shots near that the end that would have knotted the game and, perhaps saved the season.
Despite Hutchison’s early bench time, the Broncos did manage to get to as large as a 13-point lead in the first half off the efforts of Lexus Williams who had fourteen points to lead all scorers. Williams was on fire for the Broncos getting 24 points, 5 assists, and 4 rebounds. He went 3-7 from beyond the arc and 5-6 from the line.
It was Utah State’s Sam Merrill that kept the Aggies afloat and within strking distance of the Broncos. He had 12 points after going 4-6 from the three in the first half. The second half did not slow him down at all as he finished 7-10 from the three. He ended the game with 28 points.
The Broncos’ zone wasn’t enough to stop the Aggie’s overall 3-point shooting, as the team 14-25 from beyond the arc.
Justinian Jessup was able to contribute 11 points and a couple of crucial steals. He was 3-7 from 3-point land and 6 rebounds.
The loss adds to the Broncos post-season woes as this is the third-straight quarterfinals exit for the Broncos as a top-3 seed.
Broncos have lost three years in a row as a top-3 seed in the quarterfinals.— B.J. Rains (@BJRains) March 9, 2018
All eyes now turn to a chance to get into the NIT. Last year the Broncos were able to nab a win there, so perhaps there can be a bit of a redemption.