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Utah Flash preps for big home games vs. Idaho

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The Utah Flash suffered a pair of losses to the Idaho Stampede over the weekend. On Friday, Utah trailed by just one point at halftime, but Idaho used 11 turnovers in the third quarter to outscore the Flash 55-32 in the second half to take a 111-87 win.

The Stampede followed up that victory with another on Saturday, this time rallying from a seven-point deficit in the fourth quarter to defeat Utah 95-90, as as the Flash were doomed by missing 10 of their 24 free throws.

"Saturday's loss was especially disappointing because it was there for us to win," Flash general manager David Fredman said. "Too many missed free throws, and we didn't get the job done."

Idaho improved to an NBA Development League-best 28-10, while the losses dropped the Flash to 18-19. With 13 games to go, Utah is three games behind the Tulsa 66ers for the sixth and final playoff spot.

UPCOMING ACTION: The Flash continue a tough stretch of six games in nine days, including five against Idaho and the Los Angeles D-Fenders, whose record of 25-11 is tied for the second-best in the D-League.

The Flash play a pair of games against Idaho on Thursday and Saturday. Despite the two losses over the weekend, Utah did beat the Stampede 99-92 on Feb. 11 in the two teams' only game in Utah this season.

Both games will be played at 7 p.m. at the McKay Center at the campus of UVSC in Orem.

"These games will go a long way toward defining our season, one way or the other," Flash head coach Brad Jones said. "Every time we lose, the next game becomes more important. Hopefully, we'll get it figured out."

PLAYER TRANSACTIONS: The Flash released guard Curtis Stinson on March 4. The move was made because the Boston Celtics reassigned guard Gabe Pruitt to Utah earlier in the day.

"Curtis thinks he needs to be a point guard, which is fine," Jones said. "If we had just him and Kevin Kruger, that would be fine. But with Gabe, the Celtics want him to play point. Curtis decided he wanted to move on, so we obliged him."

For his part, Pruitt has played well since returning. On Friday, he shot 6-of-9 from the field and 4-of-4 from 3-point territory to score 16 points, while also getting six assists on three steals. The next night, he had 22 points, eight assists and four steals.