LOGAN, Utah (ABC4 Sports) – Taylor Funk scored 22 points and pulled down 11 rebounds, as Utah State improved to 3-0 on the season with a 96-78 victory over Santa Clara Monday night at The Spectrum.
Funk made 9-of-16 shots from the field, including 4-of-6 from three-point range for the Aggies. Steven Ashworth scored 18 points off the bench, making 6-of-8 shots, as Utah State started hot and stayed hot throughout the game, shooting 51.4 percent from the field.
Dan Akin added 13 points, while Trevin Dorius had 11.
“I feel really good,” said Funk. “They’re a very tough opponent and were projected our second-hardest in non-conference. We put up a lot of numbers against them. Every guy that got in there played really well. We did what were supposed to do. Our defense was on point and only going to get better. I’m really proud of these guys.”
“Coming into the game, we knew Santa Clara’s team was very committed to sprinting the ball up the court and transition offense,” said USU head coach Ryan Odom. “We felt like it was going to be a very up-and-down game and it turned out that way. It was a very fast-paced game for both teams.”
Utah State jumped out to a 50-36 halftime lead, and extended its lead to as many as 27 in the second half.
Rylan Jones dished out eight assists to go along with nine points. The Utah State defense forced 13 Santa Clara turnovers.
Sean Bairstow finished with nine points and four boards, while junior guard Max Shulga ended with eight points, six rebounds and four assists.
As a team, USU shot 12-of-31 from 3-point range, including an 8-of-20 mark in the first half. Utah State has now made eight or more 3-pointers in each of its first three contests. The Aggies have also outrebounded each of its opponents this season as USU outrebounded the Broncos, 41-36.
The Aggies next play another West Coast Conference team, as they travel to San Diego Thursday night.