FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. -- Brayon Blake scored 25 points and grabbed nine rebounds as Idaho held on to beat Northern Arizona 84-80 on Saturday night.
Blake was 8 of 15 from the field and 7 of 8 from the line for the Vandals (13-6, 5-2 Big Sky) who have won three straight. Victor Sanders added 21 points, Perrion Callandret had 15 points, eight rebounds and five assists and Jordan Scott chipped in 11 points.
Blake, Scott and Nate Sherwood drained 3-pointers and Callandret made back-to-back dunks in a 20-7 start for Idaho. Northern Arizona answered with a 17-2 run to take a 24-22 edge with 6:23 in the half and the Lumberjacks (3-17, 0-7) led 36-32 at intermission.
A Blake 3-pointer followed by a Sanders layup early in the second half put the Vandals back on top for good, 54-53, with 12:50 left. Northern Arizona got as close as 77-74 with 39 seconds to go but could not get closer.
"We didn't guard well in the second half. Give Idaho credit for making shots, but we didn't play good defense in the second half," Lumberjacks coach Jack Murphy said. "The problem that we discovered in the last two games is that there is no defense at the foul line. We have to defend without fouling. You can't give a team 22 free throws in the second half. I was proud of how our guys fought, but it is a tough pill to swallow when you don't get over the hump."
Torry Johnson scored 25 points for Northern Arizona who are on a seven-game skid.