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3 keys to Utah State’s win over Portland State

Utah State guard Sean Bairstow, wearing grey, goes up to dunk the ball as Portland State guard Michael Carter III and guard Ian Burke defend.
Utah State guard Sean Bairstow (2) goes up to dunk the ball as Portland State guard Michael Carter III, center, and guard Ian Burke defend in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2021, in Logan, Utah.
Eli Lucero, The Herald Journal via Associated Pres

Utah State beat Portland State 81-62 Tuesday night in the Spectrum its final home game of 2021.

Here are three keys to Utah State’s 81-62 victory over the Vikings:

  • With starting guards Brock Miller and RJ Eytle-Rock sidelined with injuries, the Aggies’ new lineup got off to a rough start, staking the Vikings to an 8-0 lead. But it was almost all Utah State after that, with USU taking control of the game with a 15-2 run midway through the first half.
  • Senior forward Justin Bean had a near-career night for the Aggies, burying all five of his 3-point attempts and 11 of 15 shots overall on his way to scoring 29 points in 34 minutes. Sophomore guard Max Shulga made the most of his first career start, scoring a career-best 18 points.
  • Utah State missed its first four shots of the game, but then poured it on offensively, shooting 58.5% as a team, including a 12-of-21 performance from 3-point range.