Point guard Marc Jackson scored 17 points against the Aztecs, Saturday.
Feb 15, 2003
Utah ran its winning streak to seven games to remain atop the Mountain West Conference standings.
Johnsen's 21 points were his most since injuring his right thumb in December at Utah State. He is now playing without a splint or a wrap on his shooting hand.
The Utes (18-4, 6-1 MWC) have won 14 of their last 15 games and stayed undefeated at home in 12 games. Utah also regained its mastery over San Diego State, avenging its only conference loss (58-56 in the opener) and improving to 25-1 at home against the Aztecs.
Tony Bland scored 16 points, Mike Mackell added 13, and Deandre Moore had 10 as San Diego State (12-9, 3-5) lost its fifth game of the last six. Bland and Mackell combined to shoot just 13 of 39 against Utah's rugged defense, which ranks fourth in the nation in scoring defense.
Jackson, who was hampered with an ankle injury early in the season and has yet to start a game at Utah, limped off the court after helping stake Utah to a 57-38 second half lead with back-to-back 3-pointers.
Jackson's worth to his team was readily apparent as the Aztecs immediately scored nine straight points, five by Moore, in his absence.
Jackson returned but the Aztecs whittled the lead to eight points before the 6-foot point guard beat the shot clock with a driving layup and then passed to Johnsen for a dunk to seal the victory.
Jackson averaged just 4.1 points before conference play but has been
unstoppable since, leading the team in scoring six times and reaching double
figures in every league game.
The Aztecs out rebounded the Utes, 39-33, but shot just 35 percent in the second half compared to Utah's 60 percent mark.