Scott Ferrall figured that Thursday’s game between Stanford and No. 11 Utah would be highly competitive. Think about it: Two teams nearing 20 wins, conference rivals, both with a winning record in the Pac-12 – it had all the makings of a great game.
Instead, Utah was more or less unchallenged and won, 75-59 – this after shooting 49 percent from the floor and limiting Stanford to 37.7 percent shooting.
“Yeah, we played really good defense and we (brought) it on offense,” Utah senior guard Delon Wright said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “If we do those two things together, we’ll have a good ending to a game.”
Wright had another big game for the Utes, finishing with a team-high 15 points, five rebounds, one assist and four steals. He was all over the place.
“I tried to do a little bit of everything today,” he said. “Thats just what we needed, so I tried to do that.”
Wright, 6-5, even added a blocked shot.
“I try to help the bigs out and get a shot block,” he said. “We needed it at that time.”
Utah also got great bench play from big men Dallin Bachynski and Brekkott Chapman, who combined for 25 points and 11 rebounds. That duo shot 10-of-18 (55.5 percent) from the floor, and Chapman hit two three-pointers for good measure.
“They stepped up today,” Wright said. “Other guys didn’t play as good as they could have, and they stepped up and filled the void.”
Jordan Loveridge, meanwhile, added 12 points and three rebounds.
“He played a great game today also,” Wright said. “He chipped in with some good points, and we were able to get the win.”
Utah improved to 19-4 overall and 9-2 in the Pac-12. The Utes, who are undefeated at home, host California (16-9, 6-6) this Sunday at 8:30 p.m. ET.
“That’s the plan – to win every game at home,” Wright said. “We have to protect home court. Any team that comes here, we don’t take it light on them.”
Utah has won five of six and 12 of 14 but has a tough slate remaining, including a home game against No. 7 Arizona (20-3, 8-2) on Feb. 28 that could decide the conference. Ferrall wonders if the Utes will be worn down by the time the conference tournament arrives.
“No, I think we’ll be fine,” Wright said. “Guys aren’t playing as much minutes as they did last year, and Coach (Larry Krystkowiak) is doing a good job of resting us in practice and on game days and stuff like that, so I think we’ll be ready. I know we’ll be ready.”
As long as Wright is around, the Utes are going to be tough to beat. Wright leads the team in scoring (14.2 points per game) and assists (5.4) and is second in rebounding (4.6).
“I just think that I do what the team needs,” Wright said. “I’m just blessed to be here.”