- Associated Press - Friday, November 18, 2016

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Utah continued its early-season onslaught Friday with its third consecutive 40-plus point win.

Lorenzo Bonam scored 19 points as the Utes rolled over a weary Coppin State team 94-51. Utah has now won its first three games by a combined 130 points.

“It’s a tough stretch for those guys and they didn’t have a whole lot in the way of legs,” Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak said. “We’re just trying to learn how to respect the game regardless of who it is we’re playing. And the price of poker’s going to go up.

“The energy and effort, that type of thing has been there for us. Now we’ve got to combine that with quite a bit more complicated scouting report, be able to engage the brain and body and everything at the same time. That’ll be a challenge for us.”

The Utes opened the game with a 19-3 run and never looked back as their 3-point shooters had their best stretch of the season. Utah shot 64.3 percent from behind the arc in the first half, including three triples apiece from Parker Van Dyke and Jake Connor. Van Dyke matched his career high with 15 points.

On the flip side, Coppin State seemed gassed from the beginning as it played its third game in three nights. The Eagles shot just 26.9 percent from the field in the first half, making it impossible to keep up with the dead-eye Utes.

Utah transfer JoJo Zamora scored a season-high 22. The Utes connected on a season-high 12 3-pointers.

Coppin State has played five games in eight days, all in different cities. The Eagles also wrapped up their third consecutive game in three nights - Coastal Carolina, BYU and Utah. All three games were 30-plus point losses.

Tre’ Thomas, Dejuan Clayton and Keith Shivers scored a team-high 10 apiece for Coppin State.

“These are going to be life experiences for these guys,” Coppin State coach Michael Grant said. “”You have to prepare yourself mentally every single day. Every time you step out here on the floor, you have to be ready to play. We haven’t been getting that.

“We have to look in the mirror. They have to assess where they are and find a way to grind this thing out because the road is not going anywhere. The schedule is not going anywhere. This is the hand we’re dealt.”

BIG PICTURE

Coppin State: The Eagles are in the money-making portion of their season, traveling the country for paydays against more talented programs. The conference season is what matters for Coppin State and it doesn’t start MEAC play until January.

Utah: The Utes continue to use the early part of the season to grow a roster with just two significant contributors from last season. The first half was their best 20 minutes of the season, but the level of competition didn’t allow for a good feel of Utah’s progress.

NEW STARTER

Utah forward Tyler Rawson started the first game of his Utes career after transferring from Salt Lake Community College. Rawson has been the second-leading scorer through the first two games and had six points, a game-high 12 rebounds and six assists Friday. Jayce Johnson moved to the bench and Krystkowiak said it wasn’t a punishment, but Johnson has had some mental breakdowns in games.

“I’m going to be mixing some stuff up, probably, throughout the course of the year,” Krystkowiak said. “Tyler’s had some good practice, that’s been another factor. Starting doesn’t mean much to me.”

UP NEXT

Coppin State: The Eagles travel to play Ball State on Monday as part of 11 of 12 games on the road to start the season.

Utah: The Utes continue their early, soft nonconference schedule when they host UC Riverside on Friday

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