The Flash dropped a very winnable game in overtime 108-116 against the Idaho Stampede. The game was a showcase for Ross Siler lookalike Coby Karl of the Stampede, who scored 36 points on a variety of aggressive drives to the basket. The Flash threw every defender at Karl and couldn’t find an answer. It was Karl who saved the game for the Stampede by hitting a twisting fadeaway with 4.2 seconds left to tie the game at 100 and force overtime.
On the previous possession the Flash actually held a 3-point lead but newly-acquired Gabe Pruitt was called for a foul before the ball was in-bounded, resulting in a technical free-throw by Karl. The Flash fell apart in the overtime and gave up several easy baskets as well multiple 3-pointers, while missing multiple point-blank layups.
The missed layups, missed rebounds and missed assignments were the story of the game. It all added up to a big missed opportunity for a team that has lost 9 games in which they had the lead in the fourth quarter.
Tonight the Flash continue their homestand against Rod Benson and the Reno Bighorns at 7:00pm in their newly-renamed home, now that the McKay Events Center is now just the Events Center.
Orem, UT, Jan. 19, 2010 – The Utah Flash returned home from a five-game road trip Tuesday night to host the Idaho Stampede. For the second time this season, it took overtime to decide the outcome between the Flash and Stampede; this time with the Stampede coming out on top 116-108.
Utah took control of the first quarter shooting 47% from the floor, and putting 29 points on the scoreboard. The Flash took control behind strong play from Orien Greene and Bennett Davis. Greene had eight points and four boards in the first quarter, and Davis chipped in six points off the bench.
Idaho played from behind for the majority of the first half. Pushing the ball up the court and looking for the fast break at every opportunity, the Stampede began to chip away at the Utah lead. Down as many as nine mid-ways through quarter number two, the Stampede battled back and took a 52-50 halftime lead. Utah struggled to shoot the ball as the pace of the game sped up, finishing the half shooting just 42% from the field.
The Stampede scored 10 unanswered points to open the third quarter, and jumped to a 62-50 lead. Utah cut the lead from 12 to just two at 70-68 with two minutes to play in the third. Greene picked up the play for Utah again in the third scoring six more helping to bring the Flash back from their deficit. Guard Dontell Jefferson also contributed on the offensive end, scoring 11 points in the third quarter. After a third-quarter 12-point lead from Idaho, the quarter came to a close tied at 77.
The game went back and forth in the early minutes of the fourth quarter. Down three points with nine seconds remaining Stampede guard Coby Karl knocked down a clutch free throw to cut the lead to one point. Karl then hit a 15-foot fade away jumper to tie the game at 100 with 4.7 seconds to go. Jefferson took the final shot of regulation for the Flash which came up short, but was tipped in by Wheeler to give the Flash a two point lead. However, the officials ruled Wheeler still had the ball in his hands as time expired and the game went to overtime.
In overtime the Stampede began to pull away behind the play of Karl and great offensive rebounding which helped Idaho to extend possessions down the stretch. The Stampede built an eight point lead and never looked back. Led by six players in double figures including 34 points from Karl, Idaho proved to be too much for Utah in the overtime period. Utah had five in double figures, 18 from Nevill and 17 from Jefferson, but shot a dismal 36% from the field for the game.
Coach Brad Jones said “The headline of the game was a Utah missed opportunity, the game shouldn’t have gone to overtime, but we just missed to many layups and free throws to expect to win.”
In the end the Stampede came out on top 116-108 in a hard fought game. Karl led the way for Idaho with 36 points and was helped by Donell Taylor with 23 points and NBA-Assignee Patrick Mills chipped in 21.
Utah Looks to rebound tomorrow night when they host the Reno Bighorns at 7 p.m. in the McKay Events Center.