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3 keys in the Utah Utes’ 98-59 win over the Arizona State Sun Devils

SHARE 3 keys in the Utah Utes’ 98-59 win over the Arizona State Sun Devils

Utah Utes guard Ian Martinez (2) shoots the ball over Arizona State Sun Devils guard Remy Martin (1) during a Pac-12 game at the Huntsman Center on the University of Utah campus in Salt Lake City on Saturday, March 6, 2021.

Annie Barker, Deseret News

Utah heads into the postseason with some momentum after the Utes pounded Arizona State 98-59 at the Huntsman Center on Saturday in the regular-season finale for both teams.

Here are three takeaways from the game:

Utah’s offense rolls

A game that looked like it would be a competitive game was anything but, as the Utes (11-12, 8-11 Pac-12) took control behind a balanced offensive effort that included 59.1% shooting from the field and going a perfect 12 of 12 at the free-throw line. After Utah’s Riley Battin hit a 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer to take a 41-28 lead into the break, the Utes built off that momentum and led by as many as 39 points.

Five Utah players finished in double-figures, led by 15 points each from Mikael Jantunen (6 of 8 shooting) and Alfonso Plummer (three 3-pointers). Timmy Allen added 13 points and a team-high eight assists, Branden Carlson scored 11 and grabbed a team-high eight rebounds, and Ian Martinez came off the bench for 12 points, five rebounds and three assists.

Sun Devils struggle

Arizona State (10-13, 7-10 Pac-12) looked disinterested during the afternoon matchup, shooting 37.5% and getting outrebounded 41-30. The Sun Devils’ Remy Martin, who entered the game leading the Pac-12 in scoring averaging 20.5 points per game, scored just eight points and was scoreless in the first half. Seven of his eight points came after Utah had already built a 30-point lead.

The Utes’ bench comes up big

Utah, which will be the No. 7 seed in next week’s Pac-12 tournament with the win, got strong play from their bench. In addition to Martinez’s effort, Battin added eight points and three rebounds and Lahat Thioune scored nine points on 4 of 4 shooting and added an assist. Utah’s bench outscored Arizona State’s 39-11, and the Utes had a 48-32 edge in points in the paint.