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Ted S. Warren, AP
Utah guard Justin Bibbins (1) looks to pass as Washington State guard Viont'e Daniels 94) closes in during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 17, 2018, in Pullman, Wash. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

PULLMAN, Wash. — Utah built a sizable lead and fended off every Washington State comeback attempt in beating the Cougars 77-70 Saturday night at Beasley Coliseum.

Turning point: After Washington State cut a once 20-point deficit to four at 72-68 late in the game, the Cougars' Malachi Flynn was called for an offensive foul with 55 seconds to play. Justin Bibbins then hit a fadeaway jumper with 26 seconds remaining to make it a six-point game and Utah held on.

The hero: Bibbins led the Utes with 24 points, shooting 7 of 15 from the field with two 3-pointers, and added four assists, one rebound and a steal. Gabe Bealer added 18 points, all on six 3-pointers.

3 keys

  • The Utes hit 12 of 31 3-pointers, including eight in the first half, while Washington State made 15 of 41 from long range to battle its way back in the game.
  • Utah outscored the Cougars 23-11 in points off turnovers, despite turning the ball over one more time (12-11) than Washington State.
  • The Utes went on a 17-0 run to build a 33-13 first-half lead, while Washington State answered with a 15-2 run to cut it back to a seven-point game in a contest that featured several runs.
Utah almanac: 17-9, 9-6 Pac-12, Won 4

Next 3

Thursday, vs. UCLA (19-8, 10-5), 7 p.m. MST (ESPN)

Saturday, Feb. 24, vs. USC (19-9, 10-5), 12:30 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)

Saturday, March 3, vs. Colorado (15-12, 7-8), 5 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)