Araujo Strikes Again as BYU Defeats No. 25 Oklahoma State

Rafael Araujo dominated in the second half on his way to a career-high 32 points and a career-tying 17 rebounds. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

SALT LAKE -- In front of 16,285 screaming fans at the Delta Center, senior center Rafael Araujo pounded his way to a career-high performance, giving the Cougars (4-1) an exciting 76-71 win against No. 25 Oklahoma State (4-1).

"I told them we needed to play perfect to win," BYU head coach Steve Cleveland said. "We aren't going to say this is the highlight of the year. We deserve this opportunity to celebrate for a couple of days and learn from our win."

Araujo took the second half into his own hands, scoring 26 of BYU's 40 points after halftime and finishing with 32 points. He also grabbed 17 rebounds, which tied his career-high. BYU pulled down an impressive 44 rebounds, while the Cowboys only finished with 18, just one more than Araujo's personal total.

"This was the best rebounding effort during my time at BYU," Cleveland said. "Defensively they did the things they needed to do."

In the last crucial minutes of the game, Araujo and senior guard Mark Bigelow combined for eight free throws, leading the Cougars past the Cowboys and holding them to only three points in the last three minutes.

"I just liked the way we executed our last four or five possessions," Cleveland said. "We wanted to get into the post. We didn't have great movement but good spacing."

Araujo began right after halftime, attacking the basket down low and scoring 16 of BYU's 18 points in just nine minutes of play. With a remarkable improvement from last year, he made his presence known by hitting jumpers and executing against Oklahoma State's defense.

Former BYU player Daniel Bobik kept Oklahoma State alive as the leading scorer with 18 points and 6-of-6 from the free-throw line. Bobik, a junior guard from Newbury Park, Calif., battled head-to-head against former teammate Bigelow in front of a tough BYU crowd.

Bigelow contributed a season-high 16 points and five rebounds, also nailing 8-of-8 free throws for the Cougars.

Even at the Delta Center, the crowd played a major role in the momentum of the game. During the last minutes of the game, the entire crowd was on their feet giving the Cougars the lift they needed.

"I think we really stepped up," Bigelow said. "The crowd gave us a little lift. The Marriott Center is no slouch in the amount of fans, but the fans were just right there for us tonight."

The Cougars opened the first half with a pair of free throws from Araujo and Bobik hit a jumper for Oklahoma State to take the lead 4-2. Bigelow hit his first shot of the night with 15:30 left on the clock, giving BYU the lead at 10-6.

Despite facing his old team, Bobik accepted the crowd's response with no hard feelings.

"I expected the worst and hoped for the best -- I got the worst," Bobik said. "You expect the fans to get on the opposing team. I am glad they got on me, that shows they cared about me. If they didn't care, they wouldn't have said anything."

Senior guard Kevin Woodberry then drained a three, giving the Cougars a 10-point lead at 18-8. Oklahome State then went on a 13-0 run, the longest scoring run allowed by the Cougars on the season.

Hall sunk two free throws to stop the run with 9:48 on the clock, making it 20-21, and hit a three pointer with just over five minutes left.

At halftime, Hall led with 10 points in just nine minutes of play. Araujo scored only six points in the first half and grabbed five rebounds going into halftime.

With this win, Cleveland mentioned how playing at the Delta Center remains a definite option for the Cougars in the future.

BYU will look to continue its charge in preseason play when they face Western Oregon Wednesday night at the Marriott Center. Followed on Saturday, the Cougars matchup with USC at 7 p.m. in Provo.

Official Basketball Box Score -- GAME TOTALS -- FINAL STATISTICS

Oklahoma State University vs Brigham Young University

12/06/03 4:08 PM at Delta Center - Salt Lake City, UT

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VISITORS: Oklahoma State University 4-1

TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS

## Player Name FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF TP A TO BLK S MIN

23 MCFARLIN, Ivan...... f 5-8 0-0 2-3 0 2 2 5 12 2 0 0 1 28

33 MILLER, Jason....... f 2-3 0-0 0-0 0 3 3 5 4 0 1 1 0 23

15 LUCAS, John......... g 3-6 1-3 1-1 0 2 2 1 8 0 1 0 1 24

20 BOBIK, Daniel....... g 5-9 2-5 6-6 0 4 4 1 18 8 1 0 2 37

24 ALLEN, Tony......... g 6-15 0-3 3-9 0 3 3 3 15 2 2 0 2 36

04 STEYN, Frans........ 1-2 0-0 0-0 1 1 2 4 2 0 1 0 0 8

14 GRAHAM, Joey........ 2-3 0-0 1-2 0 0 0 4 5 0 1 0 0 10

21 GRAHAM, Stephen..... 1-1 0-0 0-0 0 2 2 2 2 0 0 0 0 11

25 WEATHERSPOON, Janavo 1-2 0-0 1-1 0 0 0 0 3 1 0 0 0 12

32 MONDS, David........ 1-3 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 2 2 0 1 0 0 11

TEAM................

Totals.............. 27-52 3-11 14-22 1 17 18 27 71 13 8 1 6 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 15-27 55.6% 2nd Half: 12-25 48.0% Game: 51.9% DEADB

3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 2-5 40.0% 2nd Half: 1-6 16.7% Game: 27.3% REBS

F Throw % 1st Half: 7-13 53.8% 2nd Half: 7-9 77.8% Game: 63.6% 4

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HOME TEAM: Brigham Young University 4-1

TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS

## Player Name FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF TP A TO BLK S MIN

03 BIGELOW, Mark....... f 4-12 0-5 8-8 1 4 5 4 16 2 2 0 1 32

41 MEADS, Garner....... f 2-5 0-0 2-4 3 4 7 3 6 1 1 0 0 26

55 ARAUJO, Rafael...... c 10-15 0-0 12-16 6 11 17 3 32 0 2 1 0 32

01 HALL, Mike.......... g 3-8 1-4 3-4 1 2 3 4 10 1 2 0 1 24

04 LEMES, Luiz......... g 0-4 0-2 0-0 1 2 3 0 0 9 3 1 0 38

00 WOODBERRY, Kevin.... 3-6 1-3 0-0 0 0 0 2 7 3 1 2 2 33

05 SHOFF, Jake......... 1-2 0-0 2-2 1 1 2 4 4 0 0 0 1 9

10 NASHIF, Terry....... 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 1

52 JENSEN, Jared....... 0-0 0-0 1-2 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 5

TEAM................ 3 4 7

Totals.............. 23-52 2-14 28-36 16 28 44 21 76 16 13 4 5 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 11-30 36.7% 2nd Half: 12-22 54.5% Game: 44.2% DEADB

3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 2-10 20.0% 2nd Half: 0-4 0.0% Game: 14.3% REBS

F Throw % 1st Half: 12-16 75.0% 2nd Half: 16-20 80.0% Game: 77.8% 4

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Officials: David Hall, Lonnie Dixon, Kerry Sitton

Technical fouls: Oklahoma State University-None. Brigham Young

University-None.

Attendance: 16285

Score by Periods 1st 2nd Total

Oklahoma State University..... 39 32 - 71

Brigham Young University...... 36 40 - 76

Points in the paint-OKLAST 34,BY 30. Points off turnovers-OKLAST 15,BY 9.

2nd chance points-OKLAST 2,BY 15. Fast break points-OKLAST 6,BY 2.

Bench points-OKLAST 14,BY 12. Score tied-16 times. Lead changes-11 times.

Tags: Results