Hawaii wins its second straight WAC road game, pulling away from Boise State 73-66
Special to the Star-Advertiser
POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Feb 4, 2011
LAST UPDATED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Feb 4, 2011
BOISE, Idaho » Hawaii coach Gib Arnold wants to eliminate the use of the adjective "rare" when it comes to describing road wins by his basketball team.
If the Warriors play like they did last night at Boise State, there's a good chance that will happen.
Hawaii outperformed the Broncos in every phase of the game despite missing two key components and losing a third for much of the first half with an injury. The result was a convincing 73-66 triumph in front of 3,148 fans at Taco Bell Arena.
Hawaii won its second Western Athletic Conference game in a row on the mainland, something the program hadn't accomplished since the 2005-06 season.
"I think we're starting to expect to win," Arnold said. "That's been one of our slogans — expect to win. We believe in each other. And the team, tonight from the jump ball, just played."
The result might seem shocking, considering the same Boise State team administered a thorough 79-55 beatdown of the Warriors at the Stan Sheriff Center less than a month ago. Factor in that Hawaii was playing without leading scorer Zane Johnson (injury) and top defender Trevor Wiseman (personal reasons) and then lost Hiram Thompson for most of the first half after he was bloodied on an intentional foul while trying to corral a rebound.
"No one expected us to do anything," Arnold said. "We didn't have any pressure on us. The pressure was on Boise tonight, and the game plan was to slow it down a bit and make it a grinder of a game. I think our guys are pretty good in games like that."
They certainly were on this night. Hawaii (13-9 overall, 4-6 WAC) shot 58.7 percent from the field, outrebounded the Broncos 36-24 and limited the home team to just 6-for-26 shooting from 3-point range.
"We knew we couldn't run with those guys," said Hawaii forward Bill Amis, who made nine of 12 shots
and led all scorers with 22 points. "We wanted to slow it down and pass up good shots for great shots, and that's what we tried to do all night."
Amis was one of four Hawaii players in double figures. Joston Thomas finished with 16 points and nine rebounds, while Vander Joaquim posted an 11-point, 12-rebound double-double. Backup point guard Jeremiah Ostrowski, thrust into a larger role when Thompson was hurt, wound up with 12 points and eight assists.
"I just wanted to play smart out there," Ostrowski said. "It's my job as a point guard to get the offense to run and make it easier for everyone. We executed really well tonight."
Hawaii led for most of the first half and took control early in the second half. Bo Barnes hit 3-pointers on the Rainbows' first two possessions after halftime to give them a 35-33 lead. The lead swelled to as many as 15 points.
Ostrowski said strong starts in both halves - Hawaii led 11-3 in the first half - were big factors.
"It starts from the get-go, if you let them get off to a quick start and let the crowd get into it, that's what makes it harder on us," he said.
"The only thing nicer than the roar of the home crowd is the silence of an away crowd," Arnold said. "Our guys were enjoying that."
Boise State (12-10, 5-5) was led by Daequon Montreal's 17 points. Freshman Thomas Bropleh chipped in 14. The Broncos lost despite forcing 20 Hawaii turnovers.
"This team right now is playing our best basketball," Arnold said. "We're playing as good as anyone in the conference right now. We're putting together a nice little run."
School officials confirmed that Wiseman would join the team in Moscow, Idaho, for tomorrow's game.
|New Mexico State||6||4||.600||4||12-12|
|San Jose State||3||7||.300||7||11-10|
|Broncos (12-10, 5-5)|
3-point goals - Hawaii 5-13 (Barnes 3-5, Amis 1-1, Ostrowski 1-4, Miles 0-1, Thompson 0-2). Boise State 6-26 (Bropleh 3-5, Noonan 2-8, Arnold 1-2, Elorriaga 0-1, Nichols 0-1, Salzwedel 0-1, Perryman 0-2, Anderson 0-6).
Steals - Hawaii 4 (Amis, Ostrowski, Thomas, Thompson). Boise State 7 (Bropleh 3, Perryman 2, ). Blocked shots - Hawaii 7 (Amis 4, Joaquim 3). Utah State 4 (Arnold 2, Anderson, Montreal). Officials - Mike Littlewood, Eric Curry, D.G. Nelson.