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Nick Emery’s return sparks BYU in win over Utah State

NCAA Basketball: Pacific at Brigham Young Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Emery is still good at basketball, folks.

Yoeli Childs poured in 31 points and TJ Haws added 20 in BYU’s 95-80 victory over Utah State, but the return of Nick Emery was the story of the night as the junior guard scored 11 points and provided defense and an emotional spark off the bench.

Emery made his impact felt immediately, as he swished a three seconds after checking into the game and added a steal and assist less than 30 seconds later. Nick was 3-4 from downtown, but it was his presence and effort that seemed to really energize the team, particularly in the first half when BYU jumped to a 19-point halftime lead.

BYU finally broke out of its three point shooting slump, as the Cougars shot over 40% from distance for the first time this season. BYU went 11-24 (46%) from deep, led by 4 threes from Haws, 3 from Nick and 2 from Connor Harding.

Speaking of Connor Harding, the true freshman had a fantastic night off the bench, finishing with 14 points on 5-6 shooting.

Great statement for BYU after losing three in a row. Utah State was 7-1 and ranked 53 in KemPom coming into the game — including a 17-point neutral site win over St Mary’s — but BYU put the Aggies away early and were never seriously threatened.

BYU now travels to Salt Lake City on Saturday to take on Utah (4-3) at Vivint Smart Home Arena in the Beehive Classic.