Air Force 51

(12-7, 3-1 MW)

(25) Utah 63

(17-3, 5-0 MW)

    9:00 PM ET, January 24, 2005

    Jon M. Huntsman Center, Salt Lake City, Utah

    1 2 T
    AFA 30 2151
    #25UTAH 32 3163

    Top Performers

    Air Force: N. Welch 15 Pts, 3 Reb, 5 Ast, 1 Stl

    Utah: A. Bogut 25 Pts, 9 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Blk

    Bogut's 25 points power Utes

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Once Andrew Bogut got the ball, Air Force had no chance to stop him.

    Highest Div. I field goal percentage
    Pct. Team Opponent Date
    Maryland S. Carolina 1/9/71
    New Mexico Oregon St. 11/30/85

    Fresno St. Portland St. 12/3/77
    St. Peter's Utica 12/4/84
    Fordham Fairfield 2/27/84
    Utah Air Force 1/24/05
    *tied with three others

    Bogut scored 25 points on 11-of-12 shooting to lift No. 25 Utah to a 63-51 victory Monday night over the Falcons.

    "After last year, I wanted to prove to myself I could score and board against these guys," said Bogut, who didn't play to his potential last season against Air Force, which swept the season series for the first time.

    Utah (17-3, 5-0 Mountain West Conference) entered the Top 25 on Monday for the first time since being ranked for two weeks in 2002-03, and made sure this game would end differently.

    The Utes took apart Air Force with quick passes and lobs to Bogut, a 7-foot sophomore from Australia. Bogut, who leads the nation in rebounding and double-doubles, also had nine rebounds.

    "I was just throwing it up there to him. He went up and got the ball and then it was over for the defense," said Mark Jackson, who had 11 points and tied his career-high with 10 assists.

    The Utes, playing under first-year coach Ray Giacoletti, have won 12 straight since losing at Arizona on Dec. 11. The other losses were at Washington and Utah State.

    The Utes shot a school-record 80 percent from the field (24-of-30) against the nation's No. 1 scoring defense. Utah's previous best shooting game was 73.7 percent against Air Force in 1987.

    "I've never been involved in a game where a team has shot 80 percent. I have to praise our guys. They maintained their focus and discipline for 40 minutes," Giacoletti said.

    The game plan was simple: pass the ball to Bogut in the post and play tenacious defense against Air Force's back-cutting offense.

    "Having Bogut down there, we just had to get him the ball. He was scoring and passing and we just fed off of that. We had a lot of great passes," said Bryant Markson, who added 11 points.

    So close to perfection, Bogut regretted his one miss. "I was there at the rim and I was going to dunk but the defense was there and I had to pull back and missed a layup," he said

    Nick Welch had 15 points to lead the Falcons (12-7, 3-1), who lost for just the second time in eight games.

    "Once Bogut got them rolling, there wasn't too much we could do. He's 7 feet, and once he gets it in the paint we're finished," Welch said.

    Bogut scored seven points in a 14-2 run to start the second half that gave Utah a 46-32 lead after Air Force had closed within two points. The Utes, who outrebounded Air Force 23-13, maintained a double-digit lead the rest of the way.

    The Falcons, who start only one player taller than 6-foot-6, double- and triple-teamed Bogut at every opportunity but still couldn't stop him.

    "He obviously has a significant size advantage against us and no matter what we tried to do, he didn't let anything bother him," Air Force coach Chris Mooney said. "He's fantastic."

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 51 63
    FG Made-Attempted 20-45 (.444) 24-30 (.800)
    3P Made-Attempted 8-21 (.381) 4-7 (.571)
    FT Made-Attempted 3-4 (.750) 11-16 (.688)
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 16 (0/0) 11 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 1 15

    2004-05 Season

    » Jan 24, 2005 @UTAH 63, AFA 51Recap
    Feb 19, 2005 UTAH 65, @AFA 56Recap