POCATELLO â€” Itâ€™s the same story for Idaho State.
The opponent changes, as does the date, and the final score is never the same. But the end result is on repeat.
The Bengals let another lead slip away Saturday, after they were exposed defensively and had more cold shooting streaks than hot ones on offense. Big Sky Conference-leading Montana showed itself as just that and beat ISU 80-68 at Reed Gym.
Saturdayâ€™s loss was ISUâ€™s third in a row, and the Bengals led by at least five points in each game.
Grand Jury Prize winner at the Sundance Film Festival, “The Miseducation of Cameron Post” plays this Sunday, Feb. 17, at 4:30 & 7:00 p.m. in the Bengal Theater at ISU’s Pond Student Union. Chloe Grace Moretz stars as the young woman who is forced into a gay conversion therapy clinic and who struggles to find herself and understand her identity while making friends along the way. The Seattle Times calls it, “A soulful, courageous heart of a film that exalts the strength of human dignity.” Admission is $3 for the public, $2 for ISU staff and free for ISU students with Bengal ID. For trailer and more information go to www.pocatellofilmsociety.com/miseducation.
Idaho State announced Thursday that Michael Philipp has been hired as its new offensive line coach.
Philipp replaces Roman Sapolu, who coached the Bengalsâ€™ offensive line for one season (2018) before accepting a job at Fresno State in January.
Philipp comes to Idaho State after serving as the offensive line coach and run game coordinator at Long Beach Poly High School in Long Beach, California, according to an ISU-issued news release. Philipp also spent three seasons (2015-17) at Nebraska as assistant director of player personnel, graduate manager and quality control coach, per the release. Philipp and Sapolu coached together at Nebraska and played together at Oregon State.
Idaho State limited Montana State to a season-low 40 field goal attempts and shot 47.9 percent from the field to claim a 62-49 victory Thursday in MSUâ€™s Worthington Arena. The Bengals are now 16-7 overall and 11-3 in Big Sky Conference play, while the Bobcats fell to 12-12 and 7-7 in conference play.
Eight Idaho State players tallied both points and a rebound in the game as the team shot 23 for 48 overall. The Bengals were also 7 for 16 from 3-point range. Meanwhile, Montana State was able to secure just 15 field goals and three long range baskets.
Idaho State tallied 12 steals for the second time this season to match its 2018-19 best and forced 17 turnovers while collecting 15 assists.
POCATELLO â€” At halftime, Idaho State had a two-point lead and Montana Stateâ€™s Harald Frey had five points.
By the final buzzer, MSU had an eight-point win and Frey rose to a team-high 21 points.
Freyâ€™s second-half surge pushed the Bobcats to an 84-76 win Thursday at Reed Gym â€” the teamâ€™s fourth consecutive victory and second this season against ISU. Frey combined with Keljin Blevins, Ladan Ricketts and Tyler Hall to give MSU (12-12, 9-5 Big Sky Conference) four players with 17 or more points, as the team buried 13 3-pointers and assisted on 16 of 29 baskets.
â€śMontana State has got a really good team,â€ť Bengals coach Bill Evans said. â€śThey came out and played really, really well.â€ť
POCATELLO â€” Since Bill Evans took over Idaho Stateâ€™s menâ€™s basketball program in 2012, it seems no opponent, matchup or scenario has gotten in the way of success more than afternoon conference road games.
Evans and the Bengals have lost all 16 such contests, the latest coming Saturday at Southern Utah. The closest thing ISU has to an afternoon conference road win is a 75-65 victory at Southern Utah in 2014, but that game started at 5:05 p.m. Any noon, 1 p.m., 2 p.m., 3 p.m. or 4 p.m. starts have been a losses.
Afternoon games are usually played on Saturdays, two days after a 7 p.m. game on a campus several hours away. This quick turnaround is another obstacle to hurdle to win, Evans said.
Evans used Saturdayâ€™s loss as an example. After ISU beat Northern Arizona on Thursday, the team left Flagstaff, Arizona, on Friday afternoon, bused five hours to Cedar City, Utah, and was given a shootaround time of 7 a.m. Saturday. A 10 a.m. breakfast and 2 p.m. tip followed.