Johnnie Bryant (1) tries to get past New Mexico's David Chiotti. (AP Photo/Jake Schoellkopf)
Feb. 4, 2006
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) -- The Utes (10-10, 3-6 MWC) had 19 turnovers, 13 of them in the first half.
"You go back to an old nemesis, which is turnovers," said Utah coach Ray Giacoletti. "You give your opponent, especially on the road, too many opportunities. We are trying to do things that are out of character, trying to do things you can't do."
Utah had just five field goals in the first half, missing 15 of 20 field goals. The Utes shot better in the second half, hitting 11 of 21 shots, but still trailed 56-40 with 5:48 left after David Chiotti scored inside.
But New Mexico's shooters then went cold and Utah scored nine straight points. The run ended with a 3-pointer by point guard Johnnie Bryant that got the Utes within 56-49 with 3:41 left. Bryant led the Utes in scoring with 15 points, 10 of them in the second half.
Mark Walters got the Lobos offense going again with a basket inside with 1:24 remaining. Kyle Prochaska followed with a layup and Chiotti hit two free throws and a dunk off a steal.
Walters and Chiotti each scored 14 points and Prochaska had five offensive rebounds and 9 points.
"He's a junkyard dog type of player," Ritchie McKay said of the 6-foot-6 Prochaska, who hit 4 of 6 shots and several times beat the taller Utah frontline to the boards.
The Lobos scored the game's first seven points. Walters followed Joel Box's first basket with a baseline jumper and 3-pointer. New Mexico then went scoreless for the next 7 1/2 minutes, and the Utes took their only lead of the game at 8-7 on a bankshot by Jonas Langvad with 11:39 left in the first half.
The Utes' lead disappeared quickly as New Mexico countered with an 11-2 run and a 29-19 lead with 46 seconds left in the opening period.