Madsen scores 20, Utah beats WSU 80-58 in final Pac-12 opener

Dec 29, 2023, 8:59 PM

WSU Cougars Kyle Smith...

WSU Cougars men's basketball coach Kyle Smith during a March 10, 2022 game. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

(Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Gabe Madsen scored all 20 of his points in the second half and Utah rallied to beat WSU 80-58 in a Pac-12 Conference opener on Friday night.

Utah 80, WSU 58: Stats

Madsen missed all four of his first-half shots including two from 3-point range for the Utes (10-2), who have won seven in a row. He sank 6 of 9 shots after the break — 4 of 7 from distance — and made 4 of 5 from the free-throw line.

Branden Carlson finished with 19 points, eight rebounds and five assists for Utah. Keba Keita pitched in with 18 points and 11 rebounds off the bench for his second career double-double. Rollie Worster contributed 11 points and seven assists.

Isaac Jones had 12 points and 10 rebounds to pace the Cougars (9-3) with his third double-double this season. Reserve Jaylen Wells scored 10.

Keita had 10 points to help Utah take a 31-29 lead at halftime. The Cougars did not score until Oscar Cluff made 1 of 2 free throws at the 15:32 mark but they trailed by only five.

Kymany Houinsou sank a 3-pointer and Jones followed with a dunk to cap an 11-3 run as the Cougars took a 40-34 lead with 16:03 left to play. Seven of the 11 points came on second chances after WSU scored two such points in the first half.

Madsen hit back-to-back 3-pointers and added a third in an 11-2 spurt and Utah led 48-44 at the 12:22 mark and cruised from there. The Utes, who are heading for the Big 12 Conference next season, finish 10-0 at home against Washington State since joining the Pac-12 for the 2011-12 season.

Washington State stays on the road to play Colorado on Sunday. The Cougars are 0-12 all-time in Boulder. Utah will host Washington on Sunday.

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Madsen scores 20, Utah beats WSU 80-58 in final Pac-12 opener