But two things turned a 29-22 halftime score into a 67-46 win for Utah: Defense and transition.
The Utes clamped down on the Bengals, making it difficult for them to get a clean look at the basket. They forced turnovers and they converted on the fastbreak.
Mentally, the last 20 minutes could do wonders for Utah's confidence. The Utes looked tentative in the first half. They looked completely different after halftime.
"It was a big 20 minutes for us," junior point guard Glen Dean said. "It really showed the character of our team. That we weren't going to give up and that we were going to keep fighting. We had nothing to lose and everything to prove after halftime, and we played that way."