In eight years as Utah’s head basketball coach, Larry Krystkowiak has 148 wins to his credit, but he hadn’t won at Maples Pavilion – until Thursday night.
KZ Okpala returned to the Stanford lineup after missing a game with back spasms and scored 22 points, but it wasn’t enough as the Utes edged the Cardinal 70-66.
Krystkowiak’s teams had gone 0-5 at Maples, and Utah hadn’t won there since 1971 until the Utes finally broke through.
Stanford (9-10, 2-5 Pac-12) led most of the second half until Sedrick Barefield hit successive threes to give Utah a 56-54 lead with less than six minutes left.
Barefield hit another three with just over two minutes to go, but Okpala matched it about minute later for a 63-63 tie.
Parker Van Dyke’s driving layup put Utah (10-8, 4-2) up 65-63 with 55 seconds left. Okpala made one of two foul shots, but Barefield made two for a three-point cushion with 37 seconds left.
Stanford’s Josh Sharma had a great chance at a putback, but the ball rolled off the rim. He made two free throws, cutting the lead to 67-66. Barefield sank two more foul shots with 22 seconds left.
Bryce Wills missed a driving layup, and Utah’s Jayce Johnson hit a free throw with 15 seconds left.
Daejon Davis scored 17 points and did a fine job guarding Barefield for most of the night.
Barefield scored 18, and the Utes had 11 from Donnie Tillman and 10 from Van Dyke. Johnson had 11 rebounds.
The Utes, the best three-point shooting team in the conference, showed why in the first half. They hit 5 of 7 shots from distance and led at the break 31-26.
Stanford had a 23-18 lead until guard Van Dyke led a 13-3 run at the end of the half. He drove for a basket, saved a potential over-and-back violation and hit back-to-back threes.
The Cardinal forced the Utes into a shot-clock violation, but a three by Barefield and a driving layup by Timmy Allen with four seconds left finished the half.
Only three fouls were called on each team in the half. Utah didn’t get a single foul shot, while Stanford was 1 for 2.
Stanford had seven blocks in the first half, six of the them in the first 7:40.
This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/collegesports/article/In-rare-win-at-Maples-Utah-holds-off-Stanford-13560335.php.