Weber State (1-1) at Utah State (2-1)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, November 24, 9 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Dee Glen Smith Spectrum (10,270) -- Logan, Utah. Television: Aggie Sports Net, Local. Home Record: WSU 1-0, USU 2-1. Away Record: WSU 0-1, USU 0-0. Neutral Record: WSU 0-0, USU 0-0. Conference Record: WSU 0-0, USU 0-0. Series Record: Utah State leads, 38-26.
GAME NOTES: Playing the final game of a season-opening, four-game homestand, the Utah State Aggies entertain the Weber State Wildcats on Saturday night.
Weber State is an even 1-1 on the season following a 110-52 rout of Arizona Christian and a 68-67 overtime loss at San Jose State. This is the second leg of a three-game road trip for the Wildcats, who play at Dayton next Wednesday. WSU then returns home for three straight before opening Big Sky Conference play at Eastern Washington on Dec. 20.
Utah State is a game over .500 after three games, the team sandwiching a pair of wins over Idaho State (56-48) and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (77-68) around a loss to Saint Mary's (67-58). The Aggies, who members of the Western Athletic Conference, have won 51 of their last 57 home games after having a 33-game home win streak snapped last November with a loss to Denver. USU has won 26 straight home games against in-state foes, and a victory in this contest would give the team its second 3-1 start in the last three years.
The all-time series between these Beehive State rivals favors Utah State, 38-26, and the Aggies have won four of the last five and 10 of the last 12 meetings overall.
Thanks to the massive 110 points put up in the opener, Weber State is averaging 88.5 ppg this season. At the same time, the team has done well in holding its opponents to 52 and 67 points, respectively. Davion Berry has been WSU's top performer in both games, averaging 19.0 ppg in hitting 51.9 percent of his field goal attempts, including more than half of his three-point launches (5-of-9). Four others join him in double figures, and Scott Bamforth tallied 11 points and Gelaun Wheelwright pitched in with 10 to complement the 21-point effort turned in by Berry in the recent overtime loss to San Jose State. Bamforth was just 3-of-10 from the floor, the team as a whole hitting just 39.3 percent of its total shots while permitting the Spartans 43.1 percent success.
The Aggies have used a strong defensive front to achieve the success they have early on this season, yielding an average of 61.0 ppg. Offensively, the team hasn't quite found its rhythm yet, as it nets 63.7 ppg behind typical shooting outputs of .438 overall, .317 from three-point range, and .677 from the free throw line. The one area Utah State has really excelled is on the boards, logging a whopping +14 rebounding margin. Jarred Shaw enters this contest averaging a double-double consisting of 14.0 points and 10.3 rebounds per game, while Preston Medlin scores 12.7 ppg while handing out 3.3 apg, and Kyisean Reed averages the same in the scoring column while grabbing 6.3 rpg. Shaw and Medlin both tallied 17 points in the recent win over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, and Reed added 15 for the Aggies, who shot a sizzling 56.8 percent from the field while laying claim to a 23-10 edge in points from the foul line.
The Aggies are awfully tough to beat at home, and if for no other reason they get the nod in this game against a bitter rival.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Utah State 69, Weber State 65
11/24 10:36:13 ET
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