Up to Speed: Our weekly recap of Bronco Sports (Jan. 9-15)

Shaver, Marcus vs UNM 011522 (2)
Photo courtesy of Boise State Athletics

Men’s Basketball defeats Nevada for first time in six years (Jan. 12)

By Adam Bridges

The Boise State men’s basketball team now boasts an eight-game win streak after defeating the Nevada Wolfpack 85-70 on Jan. 12.

Despite having their last three games get postponed due to COVID-19, the Broncos still managed to pull off their first win against the Wolfpack since 2016.

The Broncos led the game from start to finish. Redshirt senior forward Emmanuel Akot made two three-pointers and put up multiple assists to bring the Broncos to a 41-27 lead at halftime. 

The Broncos did not let up and led by as much as 21 points in the second half. 

“It was a great team win,” said Akot. “My teammates gave me great energy after that [dunk]. It felt really good to see everyone jumping around and celebrating with me. So that’s what I love about this team. We’re a really together team and we love each other, so it was a great experience and a fun game.”

Akot finished off with 23 points and was one of three Broncos to score double digits against the Wolfpack. Redshirt senior guard Marcus Shaver Jr. scored 28 and Naje Smith scored 11. 

Women’s basketball suffers loss against UNLV (Jan. 13)

By Lexi Almeido

On Wednesday, Jan. 13, the Boise State women’s basketball team lost to the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) 73-51. The Broncos are now 5-11 overall and 1-4 in conference play. 

In the first quarter, the Lady Rebels held the Broncos to 1-for-10 shooting from the floor and took a 16-5 lead. 

UNLV’s junior guard Essence Booker scored 19 points in the first half to lead the Lady Rebels to a 35-17 lead at halftime. The Broncos were 4-for-22 in shooting. 

Redshirt senior guard Dominique Leonidas led the Broncos with nine points. Trailing behind her were freshman forward Trista Hull and sophomore forward Abby Muse with eight points each. 

Men’s tennis defeats Portland State in season opener (Jan. 14)

By Adam Bridges

Boise State men’s tennis swept Portland State 7-0 in their season opener on Friday, Jan. 14.

“I feel like we played very good tennis today,” said senior Simon Arca Costas. “There are still things we need to improve on, but I feel like the team played together and played for each other. I feel like all the new guys did a great job, especially for their first match. They played with a lot of energy and came through for the team. They helped us to what I hope will be the first victory of many.” 

The Broncos and the Vikings were tied 1-1 in the doubles until sophomore Caden Moortgat and senior Jesse Haas secured the game-winning point after a 7-5 victory over their opponents. 

The Broncos held a 3-0 lead in singles and ultimately secured the win after Arca Costas defeated his opponent 6-2 and 6-3. This was his team-leading 54th career victory.

“As for me, I felt very good out there today,” Arca Costas said. “It has been a long time since we played competitively in a tournament, two months ago. But I thought I played good tennis against a tough opponent to pick up the win.”

The team will now face the University of Oregon on Saturday, Jan. 15.

Track & Field sets records in Washington at Cougar Classic (Jan. 14)

By Adam Bridges

The Boise State jumpers and sprinters competed in the Cougar Classic in Spokane, Washington, on Friday, Jan. 14.

“It’s great to be competing indoors after two years,” said head coach Corey Ihmels. “Both groups had some fantastic performances, but more importantly, there were competitive opportunities for everyone today. I am looking forward to training and seeing everyone’s performances improve.”

Junior Dafni Georgiou broke her own school record in the preliminaries of the 60-meter hurdles in the first race of the day. Her 8.47 time was .01 second better than the school record she set last year and was fast enough to set a facility record.

Sophomore Anita Taviore also broke the school’s 200-meter dash record. She set a time of 24.06 which barely beat Mackenzie Flannigan’s nine-year-old record of 24.07.

Junior MaLeigha Menegatti received a title for the school with a time of 2:07.50 in the women’s 800-meter run. This time was the fourth-fastest in program history and set a facility record.

Men’s tennis falls to the Oregon Ducks 7-0 (Jan. 15)

By Lexi Almeido

On Jan. 15, the Boise State men’s tennis team continued their season opener with an unfortunate loss against the University of Oregon Ducks 7-0. Oregon swept all three doubles matches and then claimed victory in the six singles matches. 

Senior Simon Arca Costas and junior Jan Lucca Marquardt led the Broncos in doubles to battle against the Ducks but came up short 6-4. 

In singles, Boise State was led by junior Ryo Minakata, sophomore Caden Moortgat and freshman James Van Herzeele who all rallied from set one defeat in singles to force their matches into third-set tiebreakers.

Minakata finished first but was defeated 6-4, 2-6, 1-0 (11-9). Van Herzeele lost set one, but rallied to win set two, but was defeated in the third set 6-4, 3-6, 1-0 (10-4). Moortgat was the last Bronco to finish winning the second set but losing in the third 6-0, 6-7 (11-9), 1-0 (10-5). 

Boise State is now 1-1 on the season heading into a match against the University of Washington on Jan. 17.

Women’s basketball loses another conference game to SDSU (Jan. 15)

By Lexi Almeido

The Boise State women’s basketball team suffered another loss this season against San Diego State University (SDSU) 80-63. 

Redshirt senior guard Dominique Leonidas led the Broncos with 11 points while freshman forward Trista Hull added 10. 

The Broncos shot 53% led by sophomore guard Anna Ostile with seven points after the first quarter. Boise State still trailed 32-40 at halftime, despite shooting 45%. 

SDSU outscored Boise State 24-14 in the third quarter. The Aztecs continued this lead throughout the fourth quarter to wrap up the game. 

The Broncos will take on the University of Wyoming at ExtraMile Arena on Jan. 19. 

Men’s Basketball defeats New Mexico to continue winning streak (Jan. 15)

By Lexi Almeido

Boise State men’s basketball ran their winning streak to nine games with a win 71-63 against the University of New Mexico on Jan. 15. 

Redshirt senior guard Marcus Shaver Jr. led the Broncos in double digits with 18 points. This was his third consecutive game leading the team in scoring. 

Senior forward Naje Smith added 14 points, his second straight game in double figures. 

Fifth-year forward Abu Kigab followed with 11 points, and redshirt senior Emmanuel Akot scored 10. 

The Broncos held a 10-point lead at halftime. They were 26-9 in rebounds in the first 20 minutes.

In the second half, five of Boise State’s first seven field goals were second-chance baskets. This included a three-pointer by Smith to put an end to a brief New Mexico run. Seconds after, Akot scored a breakaway dunk off a loose ball. 

The Broncos closed out the night by making enough free throws to keep the lead and earn their ninth victory in a row. Boise State is now 12-4 overall and 3-0 in conference play. They will take on Air Force at ExtraMile Arena on Jan. 18. 

Shaver, Marcus vs UNM 011522 (2)
[Photo of Marcus Shaver Jr. in the Boise State men’s basketball game against New Mexico]
Photo courtesy of Boise State Athletics

Distance team has impressive performance at UW Preview (Jan. 15)

By Adam Bridges

The track and field distance team competed in the University of Washington Preview in Seattle on Jan. 15.

Seniors Dario De Caro and Jonathan Shields had outstanding performances for the distance team in Washington. 

“Dario and Johnny were fantastic and continue to put their names at the top of the record book,” said head coach Corey Ihmels. “I am very proud of both of them.”

De Caro finished in sixth-place in the mile and recorded the second-fastest time in program history with 4 minutes, 0.32 seconds. Shields recorded the second-fastest time in school history for the 3,000-meter race at 7:54.23.

This is the second time both De Caro and Shields have broken program records after setting the top-five 5,000-meter times last month.

The team will now get ready to split their squad between Texas and Washington for the Texas Tech Invitational and Washington Invitation on Jan. 28 and 29.

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