OREM — Jake Toolson scored a game-high 19 points and Conner Toolson added 18 to lead Utah Valley to an 82-70 win over Grand Canyon on Thursday night at the UCCU Center. The win secures the Wolverines a second-place finish in the WAC for a second straight season.
Utah Valley improves to 22-8 overall and 11-4 in WAC play. Grand Canyon falls to 18-11 overall and 10-5 in the league.
"I couldn't be more proud of my guys," said Utah Valley head coach Mark Pope. "This Grand Canyon team has been a real problem for us and they will continue to be. It seems like they crush us on the glass every time we meet them, but I'm proud of our guys for handling that point of emphasis really, really well tonight. We played together as a team and the guys made plays for each other."
Leading 6-5 just two minutes into the game, Utah Valley went on a 16-5 run capped off by a Richard Harward dunk to jump out to a 24-10 lead with 13:26 left in the half. GCU countered with a 15-5 run of its own over the next six minutes to cut the UVU advantage to just four points, 29-25, with seven minutes to go. The two teams played even the rest of the way as the Wolverines took a 43-39 lead into the break.
The two teams played even through the first 1:30 of the second half until the Wolverines used a 7-0 run to take a double-digit 56-46 lead with 14:30 remaining. Conner Toolson made a pair of free throws and Isaiah White knocked down a 3 to spark a 13-4 UVU run over a 3:14 span to help the Wolverines jump out to a 77-58 lead with just under five minutes to play.
Jake Toolson scored his 19 points on a 6-of-11 shooting from the field, including a 4-of-6 clip from long range. He also knocked down 3 of 3 shots at the charity stripe. The junior guard also pulled down eight rebounds and dished out seven assists.Comment on this story
Conner Toolson scored his 18 points on a 6-of-14 mark from the field, including a 3-of-7 clip from beyond the arc. He also hit 3 of 3 free throws and tallied a pair of steals.
Richard Harward was also in double figures with 14 points to go along with eight rebounds. Harward was a perfect 5-for-5 from the field and knocked down 4 of 6 free throws.
Utah Valley will close out regular season play on Saturday night at the UCCU Center against CSU Bakersfield. UVU's seniors will be honored in a ceremony prior to tipoff at 7 p.m. MT.