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Utah overpowers Concordia, 96-53

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah’s march through the Great Northwest Athletic Conference continued Tuesday night. Six players scored in double-figures as the Runnin’ Utes ran past Concordia (Ore.), 96-53 before a sparse crowd in the Huntsman Center.

The win came three nights after Utah defeated Northwest Nazarene, another team from the GNAC, by 44 points. The games were the first the Utes have played against NCAA Division II opponents since 2008-09.

It’s part of a process that Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak has for a squad with so many new faces.

“With our team there needs to be a sense of confidence, I think, that you’re gaining,” he said. “You don’t want to get pummeled. That can be pretty dangerous. So you do what you think is best in the scheduling.”

Krystkowiak noted that things would amp up in this particular year. The Utes host Coppin State Friday and upcoming games against Butler (Nov. 28) and at Xavier (Dec. 10).

The key for the Utes, Krystkowiak explained, is to get firing on some more cylinders and get ready for Pac-12 play.

Contributions were plentiful against Concordia. Utah had 11 players score, 11 grab rebounds, eight dish out assists, four make steals and three block shots.

“I think what we learned is just how to make adjustments. The first game we come out and we win by 40-plus points. But there’s a lot of things we need to work on,” said guard Parker Van Dyke. “So we come back in the second game and just try to make adjustments to get better each play — finishing the game, finishing every possession.”

Teammate JoJo Zamora added the early games have helped the team play together and helping everyone out with all the sets.

Things started off sluggish with the teams locked in a 7-7 tie. The Utes responded with a 6-0 run — off baskets by Lorenzo Bonam, Jayce Johnson and Tyler Rawson — to take the lead for good. The 13-7 advantage quickly swelled to 32-11 and then 45-21 by halftime.

Utah led by as many as 46 points in the second half.

Bonam topped the Utes with 17 points. Van Dyke added 15 and was followed in order by Zamora (14), Kyle Kuzma (13), Rawson (12) and Devon Daniels (10).

Christopher Edward had a team-high 12 points for Concordia.

EXTRA STUFF: Utah outrebounded Concordia, 51-33. Daniels and Kuzma finished with nine and eight boards, respectively. Rawson pulled down seven. … The announced attendance was 10,179. … Recording artist YG attending the game.

Email: dirk@deseretnews.com

Twitter: @DirkFacer