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Utah basketball notes: Collette, Bealer return to action

EUGENE, Ore. — It was a case of two starters back for Utah and one out for Oregon Friday night at Matthew Knight Arena.

For the Utes, who posted a 66-56 victory, forwards David Collette and Gabe Bealer were back in action after missing the Dec. 20 win over Northwestern State with injuries. Collette was out with an abdominal strain and Bealer was sidelined with a sore knee.

Both started in the Pac-12 opener. However, key reserve Donnie Tillman (left foot sprain) did not dress. Chris Seeley (gallbladder) didn’t make the trip.

Oregon, meanwhile, played without starting forward Paul White. The Georgetown transfer, who is averaging 11.1 points and 5.7 rebounds, missed the game because of a concussion.

THE COMEBACK: Although Utah trailed by 13 points in the first half, Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak acknowledged it was early.

“You just stay in the fight,” he said. “We had missed a bunch of open shots. I thought we played pretty well.”

Krystkowiak noted that the Utes just kind os stayed defensive-minded and didn’t change a whole lot.

“Fortunately the shots went in, in front of our bench, in the second half,” he continued. “It was a big difference.”

Utah outscored Oregon 43-25 over the final 20 minutes.

EXTRA STUFF: The attendance was 9.661 . . . Scouts from the Houston Rockets and New York Knicks were credentialed for the game . . . Oregon has now lost twice at home this month. A buzzer-beating setback to Boise State snapped a 46-game winning streak at Matthew Knight Arena. It was the longest active run of success in the nation.