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Utah State avenges WAC loss to Idaho

Sun., Feb. 27, 2011, midnight

LOGAN, Utah – Tai Wesley scored 22 points in his final home game at Utah State as the Aggies ran past Idaho 84-68 on Saturday night.

Brockeith Pane added 18 points for Utah State (26-3, 13-1 WAC) and Brian Green had 15.

The Aggies had already clinched their fourth straight regular-season men’s basketball title.

“We battled all game long, and you’ve got to give them (USU) the credit,” Idaho coach Don Verlin said. “They’re a high-powered, strong, physical team and they play with a tremendous amount of confidence in this building.”

Senior guard Shawn Henderson scored 17 points and Jeff Ledbetter 16 for the Vandals (16-12, 8-7). Stephen Madison had 10 points.

Henderson shot 7 of 14 from the floor and added four rebounds.

Ledbetter shot 5 of 11 from the floor and had three assists.

“Shawn was energetic – he played extremely hard and shot the ball really well,” Verlin said. “I thought Jeff kept his composure with the crowd on him.”

Wesley, the current WAC player of the week, has scored 20 or more points in four of his last six games. Ten of his points came on free throws, and he added seven rebounds.

Idaho scored the first two baskets of the second half, but Utah State bounced back behind Pane and Wesley to extend the lead to 56-35 with 11:10 to play. Idaho then scored nine consecutive points before Pooh Williams hit his first basket of the night to stop the Vandals’ run.

The Aggies – who avenged their only loss in WAC play, a defeat at Idaho on Feb. 9 – shot 63.2 percent from the field in the second half. Wesley shot 6 of 9 from the field and 10 of 12 from the free-throw line for the game.

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