Cougars Edge Rams

Austin Ainge contributed 10 points and a team-high six rebounds in BYU's one-point win over Colorado State Monday night. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

PROVO -- The Cougars found a little love on Valentines Day as they ended their two-game skid with a 50-49 victory over Colorado State in the Marriott Center.

"It's a difficult time for both teams," said BYU head coach Steve Cleveland. "We've got to get a break every once in a while, and we got one tonight."

Senior Mike Hall led BYU with 16 points on 5-of-10 shooting from the floor and 4-of-5 accuracy from the line. Sophomore Austin Ainge added 10 points, a game-high five assists and a team-best six rebounds. BYU's Derek Dawes, Chris Miles and Jared Jensen teamed to make CSU 7-footer Matt Nelson, who entered the game ranked sixth nationally in field goal percentage, work hard for his 10 points as Nelson made only 4-of-14 attempts from the field.

Nelson pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds to record a double-double, while fellow 7-footer Stuart Creason led the Rams with 11 points. The Rams' third 7-footer, Jason Smith, came off the bench to add four points and five rebounds. BYU forward Keena Young scored four points and grabbed four rebounds while giving up six inches to his opponent during 13 minutes on the floor.

The Cougars opened the game with a sluggish start as CSU scored nine straight points to lead the Cougars 9-0. BYU wouldn't score in the first five minutes until an Ainge floater gave BYU its first points.

The floater would spark a streak of scoring for the Cougars as they battled to pull within one. The streak was capped by a Hall steal and follow by a trailing Ainge to put the score at 13-12 or the Rams.

Ainge would tie the game at 19 with a deep three pointer with 2 minutes left in the half. After a CSU miss, Ainge pushed the floor and dished to Hall who got fouled. He made the free throws and BYU had their first lead at 21-19. From there, the Cougars would go on a 6-2 run to end the half as BYU took a 27-21 halftime lead to the locker room.

The Cougars opened up the second half with an immediate three by Jimmy Balderson, and BYU took its largest lead of the game a minute later at 31-21 on a Derek Dawes free throw. But Colorado pushed back, mainly by the play of their brother guard combo. The Morris', Michael and Sean, whittled the nine point lead down to two at 34-32.

But the house would come down with a poster dunk by Hall, giving BYU a two-point lead and some badly needed momentum. Young took an Ainge miss and put it back to help extend the Cougars' lead.

The Cougars were unable put the pesky Rams away. After a Cougar turnover, Colorado State scored a two-point bucket by Nelson to cut the lead to one with 25 seconds remaining. The Rams had the chance to pull out the victory after another BYU turnover but couldn't score on either of their last second attempts, allowing the Cougars to hold on for their third conference win of the season.

"We were fortunate at the end, no question," Cleveland said.

The win gives Cleveland the most Mountain West Conference wins (48) and moves him into fourth place on BYU's all-time victory list with 138.

The Cougars are now 3-7 in conference play with a 9-16 overall record while the Rams fall to 1-9 and 9-14 overall. BYU now takes to the road for games at New Mexico, Air Force and Utah. The Cougars start the three-game road swing against the Lobos Saturday at 7 p.m.

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

Colorado State vs Brigham Young

02/14/05 8:05 PM at Marriot Center, Provo, UT

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VISITORS: Colorado State 9-14, 1-9

TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS

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

42 WILLIAMS, Matt...... f 4-6 0-0 0-0 0 2 2 3 8 1 3 0 0 29

54 NELSON, Matt........ f 4-14 0-0 2-2 5 7 12 2 10 2 4 3 0 35

30 CREASON, Stuart..... c 4-8 0-0 3-5 5 1 6 3 11 0 1 0 0 25

01 MORRIS, Sean........ g 3-7 2-4 0-0 0 2 2 3 8 4 6 0 3 27

32 MORRIS, Micheal..... g 1-7 0-1 4-4 3 4 7 1 6 1 2 1 2 34

10 RAKIECKI, Jon....... 0-5 0-5 2-3 1 3 4 2 2 1 3 0 1 27

11 THOMASSON, Phillip.. 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 4

14 SMITH, Jason........ 2-5 0-0 0-0 2 3 5 3 4 0 0 2 0 16

21 PATTERSON, Andrew... 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 3

34 VERWERS, Stephen.... 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0+

TEAM................ 3 1 4

Totals.............. 18-52 2-10 11-14 19 23 42 20 49 10 19 6 6 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 8-22 36.4% 2nd Half: 10-30 33.3% Game: 34.6% DEADB

3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 1-2 50.0% 2nd Half: 1-8 12.5% Game: 20.0% REBS

F Throw % 1st Half: 4-5 80.0% 2nd Half: 7-9 77.8% Game: 78.6% 1

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HOME TEAM: Brigham Young 9-16, 3-7

TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS

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

01 HALL, Mike.......... f 5-10 2-4 4-5 0 2 2 1 16 2 3 0 5 38

03 YOUNG, Keena........ f 2-5 0-0 0-1 4 0 4 3 4 0 0 0 0 13

43 DAWES, Derek........ c 1-3 0-0 1-6 1 2 3 3 3 0 0 0 0 24

13 AINGE, Austin....... g 4-14 1-5 1-2 2 4 6 0 10 5 5 0 0 37

23 BALDERSON, Jimmy.... g 3-8 2-5 0-0 0 4 4 1 8 0 1 0 0 33

02 ROSE, Mike.......... 1-3 1-3 0-1 0 2 2 2 3 0 0 0 2 13

52 JENSEN, Jared....... 1-1 0-0 1-1 3 0 3 2 3 1 3 0 1 17

54 MILES, Chris........ 1-4 0-0 1-1 0 1 1 3 3 1 2 4 0 25

TEAM................ 2 3 5

Totals.............. 18-48 6-17 8-17 12 18 30 15 50 9 14 4 8 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 10-30 33.3% 2nd Half: 8-18 44.4% Game: 37.5% DEADB

3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 3-11 27.3% 2nd Half: 3-6 50.0% Game: 35.3% REBS

F Throw % 1st Half: 4-5 80.0% 2nd Half: 4-12 33.3% Game: 47.1% 3

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Officials: Steve Welmer, Tom O'Neill, Jim Stupin

Technical fouls: Colorado State-None. Brigham Young-None.

Attendance: 8481

Score by Periods 1st 2nd Total

Colorado State................ 21 28 - 49

Brigham Young................. 27 23 - 50

With the win, BYU coach Steve Cleveland moves into fourth on BYU's all-time

victory list, passing Frank Arnold (1975-83)

Points in the paint-CS 18,BY 16. Points off turnovers-CS 13,BY 20.

2nd chance points-CS 21,BY 8. Fast break points-CS 0,BY 6.

Bench points-CS 6,BY 9. Score tied-5 times. Lead changes-3 times.

Tags: Results