BYU's Tough Defense Leads to Victory

Trent Plaisted led all scorers with 18 points in BYU's win over Utah State Saturday in the Marriott Center. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)

PROVO -- BYU (6-4) ended in-state rival Utah State's (8-2) eight-game winning streak, taking a 75-62 victory Saturday afternoon at the Marriott Center. Trent Plaisted led BYU with 18 points and eight rebounds. Keena Young contributed 15 points and grabbed a game-high 12 boards.

The Cougars held the Aggies, a team shooting 52 percent coming into the contest, to just 36 percent shooting on the day. USU sharpshooter Jaycee Carroll, in particular, was held in check. Carroll, who averages 22.7 points per game on 62.9 percent shooting (22nd in the nation), was held to a paltry 31 percent on 4-of-13 shooting en route to a team-high 16-point game.

"Defensively, it was a great effort by our players," BYU head coach Dave Rose said. "It took the whole team."

Rose's team had a rough early going, committing turnovers on each of its first three possessions and four of its first five. Jimmy Balderson got the Cougars in sync with a runner in the lane and a layup off an inbounds pass underneath USU's basket, tying the game at four apiece. A scooping, double-pump layup from Austin Ainge a couple minutes later gave BYU its first lead of the day at 8-6. The team would not relinquish the lead the rest of the way.

The score sparked a 20-6 run that gave BYU a 26-12 lead with 8:37 left in the first half. Young capped the run with a fade-away jumper in the paint. The Aggies shortened the gap at 26-18 at the 6:34 mark, but the Cougars were able to push their lead back to 14 two more times in the half, once when Fernando Malaman nailed a three-pointer making it 34-20 with 4:06 to play and again less than a minute later when Plaisted fed a cutting Malaman for the layup and a 36-22 advantage.

After getting fouled while shooting beyond the arc, Ainge, who finished with 11 points and four assists, knocked down two-of-three free throws with three-tenths of a second remaining in the half. The freebies gave BYU a 38-28 halftime lead.

The two teams came out in the second half matching each other shot-for-shot, keeping the margin at 10 for BYU with a 44-34 lead. The Cougars began to pull away when Rashaun Broadus connected from downtown and Plaisted put in an easy deuce in the post, part of a 21-13 BYU run. Malaman drew two ovations from Cougar fans by emphatically swatting two USU shots, and senior Mike Rose drained two three-point shots during the run.

BYU led by as many as 20 points on the way to its 19th consecutive home win, a streak that is tied for fifth best in the nation. With the victory, BYU became the only undefeated team remaining in the current standings for the Old Oquirrh Bucket at 3-0. The bucket goes to the Utah basketball team that finishes the season with the best record against in-state opponents.

"Everything we want to do as a team is still in front of us," Rose said. "It's a long season."

Next up for the Cougars is Western Oregon, who will visit the Marriott Center on Fri., Dec. 22. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m., and fans can listen to the action live on KSL Newsradio 102.7 FM and 1160 AM out of Salt Lake City.

CLICK HERE to view postgame notes and quotes.

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

Utah State Aggies vs BYU Cougars

12/16/06 4:06 pm at Provo, UT

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VISITORS: Utah State Aggies 8-2

TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS

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

21 SESSION, Chris...... f 6-11 0-0 0-0 2 4 6 1 12 0 0 0 5 31

24 PETERSON, Durrall... f 0-4 0-3 0-0 0 2 2 4 0 1 3 1 1 17

40 DuCHARME, Stephen... f 4-11 0-0 2-2 1 5 6 2 10 0 0 0 0 26

00 WATSON, Mikel....... g 3-9 0-1 1-2 1 3 4 4 7 2 3 0 2 23

20 CARROLL, Jaycee...... g 4-13 0-3 8-8 3 4 7 3 16 0 2 0 0 35

03 HAMMER, Nick........ 2-5 0-1 1-1 2 2 4 2 5 2 1 1 1 20

10 CLARK, Kris......... 0-3 0-3 0-0 0 0 0 2 0 1 2 0 1 16

23 HARRISON, O.J....... 0-1 0-0 0-0 0 2 2 0 0 1 1 0 1 8

30 SPICER, Chaz........ 1-1 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1 2 0 2 0 1 9

31 EARL, Michael....... 2-3 0-0 6-7 0 3 3 2 10 0 0 0 1 15

TEAM................ 1 1

Totals.............. 22-61 0-11 18-20 10 25 35 21 62 7 14 2 13 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 10-26 38.5% 2nd Half: 12-35 34.3% Game: 36.1% DEADB

3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 0-4 0.0% 2nd Half: 0-7 0.0% Game: 0.0% REBS

F Throw % 1st Half: 8-10 80.0% 2nd Half: 10-10 100 % Game: 90.0% 1

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HOME TEAM: BYU Cougars 6-4

TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS

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

03 YOUNG, Keena........ f 7-13 0-0 1-2 2 10 12 1 15 0 2 1 1 33

23 BALDERSON, Jimmy.... f 3-8 0-2 4-6 1 3 4 1 10 2 5 0 1 32

44 PLAISTED, Trent..... c 8-12 0-0 2-7 3 5 8 3 18 4 4 3 1 36

01 BROADUS, Rashaun.... g 2-4 1-2 1-2 2 1 3 2 6 1 1 0 0 14

30 CUMMARD, Lee........ g 1-5 1-3 0-0 0 7 7 1 3 3 1 0 1 35

02 ROSE, Mike.......... 2-5 2-5 1-2 0 0 0 0 7 0 1 0 0 12

13 AINGE, Austin....... 3-3 1-1 4-6 0 2 2 3 11 4 1 0 0 23

15 MALAMAN, Fernando... 2-4 1-2 0-0 0 0 0 5 5 0 0 2 0 10

20 BURGESS, Sam........ 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2

24 MURDOCK, Ben........ 0-1 0-1 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 3

TEAM................ 1 2 3

Totals.............. 28-55 6-16 13-25 9 30 39 17 75 14 15 6 5 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 14-30 46.7% 2nd Half: 14-25 56.0% Game: 50.9% DEADB

3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 3-11 27.3% 2nd Half: 3-5 60.0% Game: 37.5% REBS

F Throw % 1st Half: 7-14 50.0% 2nd Half: 6-11 54.5% Game: 52.0% 5

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Officials: David Hall, Stanley Reynolds, Mike Reed

Technical fouls: Utah State Aggies-None. BYU Cougars-None.

Attendance: 10335

Score by Periods 1st 2nd Total

Utah State Aggies............. 28 34 - 62

BYU Cougars................... 38 37 - 75

Points in the paint-USU 36,BY 40. Points off turnovers-USU 15,BY 23.

2nd chance points-USU 10,BY 14. Fast break points-USU 8,BY 6.

Bench points-USU 17,BY 23. Score tied-3 times. Lead changes-1 time.

Tags: Results