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Boise State (17-8) at Fresno State (9-16)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 23, 10 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Save Mart Center (15,596) -- Fresno, California. Television: None. Home Record: BSU 11-1, FSU 5-7. Away Record: BSU 4-7, FSU 4-9. Neutral Record: BSU 2-0, FSU 0-0. Conference Record: BSU 5-6, FSU 3-9. Series Record: Boise State leads, 17-15.
GAME NOTES: The Fresno State Bulldogs try for back-to-back wins over Division I programs for the first time since November, as they clash with the Boise State Broncos in Mountain West Conference action at the Save Mart Center on Saturday night.
Fresno State, which is all alone at the bottom of the MWC standings, is coming off a thrilling 69-64 overtime win against Nevada on Tuesday night in Reno, snapping a three-game slide in the process and winning against another league member for just the third time in 12 tries.
The last time FSU won consecutive games was in early December versus Long Beach State and San Diego Christian, and before that the team had rattled off three straight victories in the middle of November versus UC Riverside, Pacific and Cal Poly.
Meanwhile, the Broncos are still in the bottom half of the league standings with a mark of 5-6. In action on Wednesday night, BSU knocked off Air Force at home in a 77-65 final for its second victory in the last three outings.
The Broncos lead the all-time series by a count of 17-15, but the squad is only 5-10 when clashing with FSU on the road. BSU won the first meeting of the season this time last month by a score of 74-67 at Taco Bell Arena in Idaho.
It doesn't happen often these days, but Air Force actually beat the Broncos on the glass on Wednesday night, 28-27, but still the hosts played well enough otherwise to come up with the double-digit conference win. Anthony Drmic led four players in double figures with 23 points, followed by Jeff Elorriaga with 17 as he converted 5-of-12 beyond the arc. Derrick Marks came up an assist shy of a double-double with his 11 points, while Thomas Bropleh knocked down all four of his field goal tries, two on the perimeter, to post 10 points.
Drmic, who has led the team in scoring in three of the last five outings, is currently second on the list for the Broncos with 16.1 ppg, shooting 40 percent out on the perimeter. Marks (16.5 ppg) has feasted at the free-throw line thus far (116-of-138) and is also first on the team with 89 assists, while Elorriaga (10.4 ppg) joins Drmic as a top-notch perimeter threat with a team-best 65 triples.
Tyler Johnson scored 19 points as he helped lead Fresno State to a five-point overtime win against the Nevada Wolf Pack in Mountain West Conference play at the Lawlor Events Center earlier this week. Also scoring in double figures for Fresno State were Kevin Foster and Allen Huddleston with 15 and 11 points, respectively, as the team bounced back from an overtime loss against Wyoming last weekend. The Bulldogs shot just 19-of-30 at the free-throw line overall, but in the extra session FSU made good on 7-of-8 at the stripe in order to claim victory.
Tyler Johnson remains the only double-digit scorer for the Bulldogs through 25 games with his 12.2 ppg, shooting 44.5 percent from the floor overall and a strong 41.6 percent beyond the arc for a group that is generating a mere 59.6 ppg. If there is such a thing as good news for a program that is seven games under .500 on the campaign, it is that the Bulldogs have managed to hold opponents to just 60.9 ppg.
Fresno State has put together some very solid defensive efforts this season and that could again be the story for this weekend, but when it comes to scoring options, BSU just has too many for the Bulldogs to keep track of these days.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Boise State 67, Fresno State 56
02/23 10:33:21 ET
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