Utah State falls to Texas Tech, 65-53
End of the road for the Aggies:
After a great run in the 2020-21 campaign, the season comes to a halt for Craig Smith’s Aggies.
The first half was close, and low-scoring as expected, Utah State brought a three-point lead into the locker room at 26-23, following a Justin Bean buzzer beating layup. Heading into the second half, Neemias Queta hadn’t gotten involved often on the scoring side, with the Red Raiders defense forcing others to beat them, and that strategy worked.
In the second half, USU extended the lead to six following a Brock Miller jumper at the 16:49 mark, but that would be the final time they held the lead. TJ Shannon hit a jumper giving Tech a lead, and it was full steam ahead from their on out, going on a 26-4 run at one point, while stretching the lead out to 17 in the winding minutes.
It ended up being a 13 point win, 65-53, and it’s easily to pinpoint why Utah State struggled. They couldn’t make shots from deep, lack of guard scoring came back to bite them here, shooting a ghastly 4-19 from deep, which in turn allowed Tech to safely double-team Queta, never allowing him to get consistent looks inside.
Turnovers also plagued Utah State giving it away a season-high 22 times.
— USU Men's Hoops (@USUBasketball) March 19, 2021
Mac McClung led all scorers, putting up 16 for Texas Tech despite going 5-15 from-the-field, and Justin Bean put up a team-high 13 for USU.
Despite never getting rolling on offense the way he could’ve been, Queta went off, 11 PTS, 13 RBS, 6 AST, 7 Blocks. Big-time game for Utah State’s superstar.
For the winning Red Raiders, they’ll face off against Number 3 seed Arkansas in the Round of 32 following their win over the Colgate Raiders
It’s now the offseason for Utah State, and let the rumors commence about Craig Smith’s future. A lot could change for the Aggies, and while it’s a disappointing end, getting to the tournament once again is a tremendous thing to achieve.