A 21-1 second-half run wasn’t enough for Utah Valley as San Francisco fended off the visitors late to hand the Wolverines a 78-73 loss on Monday night at War Memorial Gym in the College Basketball Invitational quarterfinals.
UVU (23-11) missed nine of its final 10 shots of the first half and hit just two of its first 12 in the second half as the hosting Dons (20-15) scored 18 of the first 23 points in the second period and went ahead 64-42 with 9:26 to play.
That’s when the Wolverines’ offense finally got going. Over the next five-plus minutes, UVU outscored San Francisco 21-1, including 10 points from Kenneth Ogbe, to make it a 65-63 game.
Three straight 3-pointers from USF — two by Frankie Ferrari and one by Jordan Ratinho — helped keep the Dons in front, though, and countered two straight 3-pointers from Ogbe.
The Wolverines missed a pair of shots in the final minute that could have cut the Dons’ three-point lead before San Francisco sealed the win with four straight free throws.
Ratinho and Chase Foster each scored 20 points for the Dons, who were outshot from the field by UVU (45.9 to 43.3 percent). San Francisco, however, hit four more 3-pointers (12 to 8) and made 14 of 18 free throws, compared to 9 of 11 for UVU.
San Francisco also had 22 assists, led by Ferrari's 11, compared to eight for UVU.
Ogbe paced the Wolverines with 26 points on 10 of 15 shooting, including 5 of 7 from 3-point range, while Brandon Randolph had 22 points, seven rebounds and four assists and Akolda Manyang added a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds.
Outside of Ogbe and Randolph, who combined to hit 18 of 24 field goals, UVU shot just 27 percent from the field.
The loss ends UVU’s season, one year after the Wolverines advanced to the CBI semifinals before falling to eventual champion Wyoming.