Idaho State lost 77-65 to Pepperdine on Friday night at Firestone Fieldhouse in Malibu, California.
Idaho State (3-4) shot 41.5 percent from the field while Pepperdine shot 46.2 percent. The Bengal defense held Pepperdine (4-6) to 1 for 17 shooting from the 3-point line but ISU only managed six 3s on 20 attempts.
Idaho State was 15 for 24 from the free-throw line, while the Wave made 16 of 17 from the line. The Bengals were out-rebounded for the first time this season, 39-32.
“We got owned on the glass tonight,” Idaho State coach Ryan Looney said. “We turned it over way too much. In our mind, that was the difference. They had so much more size and athleticism than we have right now.”
Tarik Cool led Idaho State in scoring with 21 points. He was 7 for 17 from the field and 3 for 7 from the 3-point line. Jared Stutzman had 13 points. He was 3 for 5 from the field while making six free throws on eight attempts.
Chidi Udengwu was the Bengals’ top rebounder with seven.
Idaho State led 34-33 at halftime after leading for the majority of the first half. The Bengals led 11-5 four minutes into the game after a layup by Chier Maker. Idaho State built a 29-22 lead with 3 minutes, 32 seconds left in the first half after a 3-pointer by Cool, and its biggest lead of the game was 32-24 with 2:20 left after a 3-pointer by Maker.
Pepperdine ended the first half on a 9-2 run.
“I am proud of the guys for jumping out to a quick start,” Looney said. “We had our best week of practice we have had all year. That is part of the culture we are working towards in preparing for games. We have grown by leaps and bounds.”
Pepperdine continued its run in the second half, taking a 47-43 lead with 14:36 left in the game. The lead was extended to 61-49 with 8:23 remaining.
Pepperdine’s biggest lead was 17 at 73-56 with 3:33 left. Idaho State outscored the Wave 9-4 over the final 3:33.
Idaho State has 10 days before it hosts UC Santa Barbara on Dec. 16 at 7:30 p.m. in Reed Gym.