LAS VEGAS, Nevada - Nathan Cooper had 24 points as Brigham Young may have ended Texas Christian's NCAA tournament hopes with a 90-74 victory Tuesday in the first round of the Western Athletic Conference tournament.
Cooper had eight of his 24 points in a 16-1 run early in the game that gave BYU a 16-5 advantage, and the Cougars never trailed the rest of the way.
The win moved BYU (12-15) into Thursday's quarterfinals with a matchup against rival Utah, the tournament's top seed.
The Cougars shot 13-29 from 3-point range. Michael Vranes was 5-for-7, Mark Bigelow was 4-for-5 and Cooper connected on 3-of-6 from behind the 3-point arc.
Four BYU players scored in double figures, offsetting Lee Nailon's 33 points and 13 rebounds for TCU (19-10).
Nailon and teammates Ryan Carroll and Shannon Long all played the final 10 minutes of the game with four fouls.
BYU was aided by three technical fouls called in succession against Nailon, Lee and the TCU bench midway through the second half with the Cougars leading 62-57. BYU went on a 12-5 run to pull ahead by 12 points and was never seriously threatened the rest of the game.
Bigelow had 20 points while Vranes had 19 and Mikeli Wesley added 17. Carroll had 17 for TCU.