Vandals top Eastern on the road 74-71


CHENEY, Wash. — The Idaho men’s basketball team edged Eastern Washington, 74-71, on Thursday evening. The Vandals (7-17, 3-10 BSC) led the Eagles (16-8, 9-4 BSC) by 18 at the half, and held on for the victory over one of the second place team in the Big Sky.

The Vandals had their best half of the season in the first 20 minutes. They trailed 6-3 in the early going, but went on a 16-0 run, sparked by three treys by Damen Thacker to take a 17-6 lead. Idaho continued to expand its lead, leading by double digits almost the whole half. The visitors led by a game-high 18 points at the break, 41-23.

The Vandals pushed their lead out to 24 points, 49-25, but eventually the Eagles began to chip away. With 10:51 remaining, Eastern Washington got the deficit within single digits for the first in the second half, 53-45, when Mason Peatling scored underneath. Idaho expanded the cushion again, leading 63-48, with 7:31 to play. The Vandals led by 10 points, 72-62, with just under two minutes to play. The Eagles trailed, 73-71, with four seconds to play, but Idaho held on to earn the victory and hand EWU just their second home loss this season.

Trevon Allen led the Vandals with 32 points and 11 rebounds. Damen Thacker and Ja’Vary Christmas each chipped in 11 points.

The Eagles shot 10 free throws in the first half, while the Vandals had none. Idaho shot its first foul shot seven minutes into the second half. Overall, EWU was 21-for-27 from the charity stripe, while Idaho was 10-for-21.

Idaho shot 50.0 percent from the field (29-for-58), while EWU was 21-for-56 (37.5 percent).

Trevon Allen had his first career double-double, recording 32 points and 11 rebounds.

Ja’Vary Christmas scored 11 points, the most since he scored 17 in the opening game of the year.

Babacar Thiombane had six rebounds in the game, five of which were offensive. He grabbed a huge one off a free throw miss with 33 seconds remaining to run extra time off the clock.

Overall, the Vandals outrebounded the Eagles, 46-28, including a 11-4 edge on the offensive glass.

Idaho had 10 steals in the game. They turned the ball over 23 times and EWU turned them into 27 points.

The Vandals scored 36 points in the paint compared to 22 for the Eagles.

Trevon Allen. Allen had his second career 30-point. He led the team in scoring with 32 points. He also pulled down a career-high 11 rebounds, leading to his first career double-double. The senior also tallied seven steals and three assists. He now sits at 1220 career points, good for 12th on the Vandals’ All-Time Scoring List, and six points out of 11th.