The men’s basketball team played the Fighting Sioux of North Dakota in its second Great West Conference game of the season, losing 67-62.
This was North Dakota’s first conference game and they came into the game with a
dismal record of 2-14 overall, losing 11 of its last 12.
However, don’t let the record fool you, because the Fighting Sioux handed the Wolverines their first loss in conference play and just their second loss all season at the McKay Events Center.
“(Travis) Bledsoe had a wonderful game. He controlled the game and I give him all the credit in the world for putting us on our heels,” UVU coach Dick Hunsaker said. “You have to give credit to North Dakota. They came in energized and they deserved the victory.”
Going into the break, the Wolverines had a two-point lead thanks to a buzzer-beating three pointer by senior guard Jordan Swarbrick. The Wolverines shot 43 percent from the floor in the first half while North Dakota shot a stellar 66.7 percent.
At the start of the second half, it looked to be a back and forth battle as both teams went shot for shot. The Wolverines would get a five-point lead, 48-43, but after a quick 11-0 run by the Fighting Sioux, making the score 54-48, the Wolverines had to play catch up late in the game.
Utah Valley would not go quietly, dropping the Fighting Sioux lead to three, 58-55, with under a minute left in the game.
The Wolverines could not capitalize on two possessions and late free throws by North Dakota would prove to end Utah Valley’s hopes of a comeback.
The Fighting Sioux dominated in the paint, dropping 40 points inside, and the Wolverines could only manage 16.
As of Jan. 15 the Wolverines have a record of 7-9 (1-1) and will look to get back on track when they face Great West Conference foe, South Dakota.