Southern Utah (1-0) at Utah State (1-0)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Tuesday, November 12, 9:05 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Dee Glen Smith Spectrum (10,270) -- Logan, Utah. Television: None. Home Record: SUU 1-0, USU 1-0. Away Record: SUU 0-0, USU 0-0. Neutral Record: SUU 0-0, USU 0-0. Conference Record: SUU 0-0, USU 0-0. Series Record: Utah State leads, 5-0.
GAME NOTES: A couple of programs from the Beehive State get together in Logan tonight, as the Utah State Aggies play host to the Southern Utah Thunderbirds in non-conference action at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.
The Aggies are shooting for their second win in as many tries after dismissing USC at home, 78-65, in their home arena on Friday night. USU is now 32-1 since the 1957-58 campaign when tipping off a season at home, is 80-29 in season openers overall, and an impressive 15-1 under head coach Stew Morrill.
As for the T'birds, they too captured a win in their first game of 2013-14, although the competition was not quite as noteworthy, as the group dismissed visiting Arizona Christian, 85-78, last week in Cedar City.
Utah State leads the all-time series by a count of 5-0, thanks in part to a 65-62 victory over the Thunderbirds in the most recent meeting back in 2011.
Southern Utah actually fell behind by nine points in the first half against Arizona Christian in the opener and trailed by five at the break before erupting for 53.6 percent shooting from the floor and 18-of-21 at the free- throw line in the second half to secure the win. In a game that featured six ties and eight lead changes, A.J. Hess led the way with 17 points and six rebounds in 24 minutes of action.
Also posting double-digit points were Juwan Major and Jayson Cheesman with 12 points apiece, followed by Trey Kennedy with 11, on a perfect 8-of-8 shooting at the free-throw line, and Cal Hanks bringing up the rear with 10 points and seven rebounds in a reserve role before fouling out.
Utah State went from shooting 56.7 percent from the field in the first half against visiting USC to only 40.0 percent after intermission, yet the hosts still increased their lead over the Trojans as they eventually posted the 13- point victory. Except for TeNale Roland who tallied eight points, every starter for the Aggies landed in double figures, beginning with Preston Medlin who accounted for 17 points on 4-of-9 shooting behind the 3-point line.
Also having solid season debuts were Jarred Shaw and Spencer Butterfield with 12 points apiece, followed by Kyle Davis with 10 points and seven rebounds, his effort on the glass ranking second only to Danny Berger who pulled down eight boards in a reserve role.
Defensively, the Aggies humbled USC by limiting the Pac-12 squad to just 36.9 percent from the floor and a dismal 4-of-24 showing beyond the arc.
The fact that the Thunderbirds struggled at home against a lesser opponent is not a good sign as the team goes into a hostile environment that has been very tough on opponents over the years.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Utah State 75, Southern Utah 63
11/12 10:32:14 ET