Moscow, Idaho --- In gritty and frenetic fashion, the San José State men's basketball team defeated the University of Idaho 58-49 on the road.
The victory gives SJSU back-to-back wins away from home for the first time since December of 2012 with wins at Texas State and UT Arlington.
Three times during the last five minutes an Idaho player challenged Brandon Clarke at the rim, and all three times they were sent away. The Vandals scored just one basket, an Arkadiy Mkrtychyan layup, in the final 6:43 of the game.
Meanwhile Jaycee Hillsman drove the lane for the hoop and the harm to give the Spartans (3-3) a 52-47 advantage with 4:45 remaining. Then Clarke showed his touch with a straight-on jumper in the lane to maintain the five-point lead with 3:06 left.
An Idaho turnover and another block by Clarke gave SJSU more chances to increase the lead in the waning seconds. Hillsman did just that when he calmly sank both free throws with 46 seconds left to put SJSU up 56-49.
It was a perfect shooting night for Hillsman who hit all five of his attempts from the stripe and was 3-of-3 from the floor for 11 points.
Clarke notched his San José State single-game record tying sixth block with 36 seconds remaining, when Mkrtychyan tested him again with a layup attempt.
Jalen James iced the game with a pair of free throws that put the Spartans up 58-49 with 30 seconds left.
It was a far from perfect night for Ryan Welage, who finished the game 1-of-10 from downtown - But, the shots that he did make were huge. He had nine of his game-high 15 points in the first half, hitting a handful of leaners in the lane and his only 3-ball.
Seven of SJSU's nine turnovers came in the first period when players from both teams were struggling to take care of the basketball. The two teams combined for 15 first-half turnovers and only hit one shot each during the final 5:08 of the first half.
San José State built an eight-point lead in the beginning of the second half, but saw it evaporate by the 6:10 mark when Nate Sherwood hit two free throws to tie it, 47-47. That would have come a lot sooner if not for Terrell Brown, who came off the bench and hit a three from the right corner to put the brakes on the Vandals' momentum. His basket from distance made it 47-43 Spartans lead with 7:55 to go.
From there the Brandon Clarke block party began and San José State went on to beat the University of Idaho for the first time in six tries dating back to the 2011 Western Athletic Conference Tournament.
After taking two of the last three on the road trip, the Spartans return home to face Santa Clara this Saturday, December 3, at 7:00 p.m. (PT).
TIP-INS: The win gives SJSU back-to-back wins on the road for the first time since beating Texas State and UT Arlington in December of 2012 ... The Spartans collected a combined 28 offesnive rebounds in the back-to-back wins... It is the first win over Idaho since Mar. 10, 2011 in the Western Athletic Conference Tournament ... Six blocks for Brandon Clarke matches the SJSU single-game record set by Menelik Barbary on January 26, 2006 versus Louisiana Tech ... A 58-49 victory is the first time holding a Division I opponent under 50 points in a win since February 17, 2009 when SJSU beat Utah Valley 52-47 ... SJSU turned the ball over twice in the second half at Idaho, and has turned the ball over 10 or less times in three straight contests.
Newspaper Box Score
San Jose State vs Idaho
11/29/16 7:00 PM at Memorial Gym (Moscow, Idaho)
At Memorial Gym (Moscow, Idaho)
SAN JOSE STATE 58, IDAHO 49
SAN JOSE STATE (3-3)
Welage, Ryan 6-19 2-2 15; Hillsman, Jaycee 3-3 5-5 11; Clarke, Brandon 4-10
1-2 9; James, Jalen 2-7 2-2 8; Mitchell, Brandon 3-3 0-0 6; WILLIAMS, JR.
GARY 1-9 2-2 4; Brown, Terrell 1-4 0-0 3; Nichols, Isaiah 0-5 2-2 2;
Schwartz, Cody 0-0 0-0 0; Thornton, Isaac 0-2 0-0 0; Boyce, E.J. 0-2 0-0 0.
Totals 20-64 14-15 58.
Sanders, Victor 5-13 3-3 15; Mkrtychyan, Arkadiy 4-12 1-2 9; Sherwood, Chad
2-6 2-3 7; Allen, Trevon 2-6 2-2 6; Blake, Brayon 2-6 0-0 4; Sherwood, Nate
1-4 2-3 4; Scott, Jordan 1-3 0-0 2; Egbert, Ty 1-2 0-0 2; Brimhall, Tyler
0-1 0-0 0; Ingram, Pat 0-0 0-0 0; Franklin, Myles 0-0 0-0 0; Blair, Nick 0-0
0-0 0. Totals 18-53 10-13 49.
San Jose State................ 30 28 - 58
Idaho......................... 26 23 - 49
3-point goals--San Jose State 4-24 (James, Jalen 2-6; Brown, Terrell 1-3;
Welage, Ryan 1-10; WILLIAMS, JR. GARY 0-1; Nichols, Isaiah 0-2; THORNTON,
Isaac 0-1; Boyce, E.J. 0-1), Idaho 3-14 (Sanders, Victor 2-5; Sherwood, Chad
1-5; Allen, Trevon 0-1; Blake, Brayon 0-1; Scott, Jordan 0-1; Brimhall,
Tyler 0-1). Fouled out--San Jose State-None, Idaho-Sherwood, Nate.
Rebounds--San Jose State 41 (Clarke, Brandon 7; Welage, Ryan 7), Idaho 39
(Scott, Jordan 8). Assists--San Jose State 7 (Thornton, Isaac 3), Idaho 4
(Sanders, Victor 3). Total fouls--San Jose State 13, Idaho 16. Technical
fouls--San Jose State-None, Idaho-None. A-674