Cougars Upset No. 6 Louisville at Las Vegas Invitational

Sophomore Jonathan Tavernari led the Cougars with 29 points against the Cardinals on Friday night. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

LAS -- The BYU Cougars men's basketball team came out on top of No. 6 Louisville Friday 78-76 in the semifinal round of the Las Vegas Invitational, the highest-ranked team BYU has beaten since 1965. The Cougars improve to 5-0 on the season as the Cardinals fell to 3-1.

The Cougar victory came on the backs of sophomore Jonathan Tavernari's 29 points and junior Trent Plaisted's double-double of 21 points and 12 rebounds. BYU will complete the Las Vegas Invitational Saturday against No. 1 North Carolina, 99-82 winners over Old Dominion. Saturday's game will be nationally televised on ESPN2 at 7:30 p.m. PT (8:30 MT).

"I told our players in the locker room after the game that this was a very big win for us, but we only have about an hour to enjoy it before we have to focus on our game tomorrow," BYU coach Dave Rose said. "I told them that we don't want this to be the high point of our season. We need to stay focused on our goals for the remainder of the season."

After the Cougars came out of halftime with a four-point lead, 41-37, the second half between BYU and Louisville saw a lot of back-and-forth action as there were five lead changes and two ties. The largest lead the Cougars had in the second half was 11 points, while the Cardinals were never able to get a lead larger than two points.

Clinging to a narrow three point lead, Louisville sophomore Earl Clark had a chance to tie the game with just under 11 seconds left as he had an open look from beyond the arc, but his shot proved to be off as Tavernari came down with his final rebound of the game.

Tavernari was fouled and made both of his free throws with only 1.4 seconds left on the clock to open the lead to 78-73, which sealed the victory for the Cougars as a half-court heave proved not enough for the Cardinals to revive the game.

"BYU without question deserved the victory," Louisville coach Rick Pitino said. "We turned the ball over too much. We shot 70 percent in the first half. Give BYU credit; they shot the ball very well."

Potentially the play of the game for the Cougars came with just over seven minutes left in the contest on a fastbreak that saw Tavernari hit a streaking Plaisted with a behind-the-back pass for a big one-handed dunk by Plaisted.

The start of the game saw a lot ball of movement in the first 10 minutes of the game. The Cougars had numerous looks at the net as they had 23 shots from the field but converted only six of them. Although the Cardinals shot 70 percent in the first half, Louisville committed 13 turnovers, which proved to be costly in the first period.

The Cardinals started off the second half defensively the same way that they did the first half, applying full-court pressure. This helped Louisville narrow the gap to only one point with 15:45 left in the game.

It was not until the 14:40 mark of the second half that Louisville got its first lead since early in the game, 49-48. However, BYU was able to claw back into the lead four minutes later as Plaisted had his first of three dunks.

Louisville had four players reach double figures as Derrick Caracter led the Cardinals with 24 points.

CLICK HERE for postgame notes.

Official Basketball Box Score

BYU Cougars vs No. 6 Louisville

11/23/07 6:00pm at Orleans Las Vegas Invitational

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VISITORS: BYU Cougars 5-0

TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS

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

20 BURGESS, Sam........ * 0-4 0-2 4-4 1 2 3 3 4 1 0 0 2 34

24 MURDOCK, Ben........ * 2-3 1-2 2-2 0 3 3 3 7 5 1 0 0 31

30 CUMMARD, Lee........ * 4-10 1-5 0-0 1 1 2 5 9 0 1 0 0 25

44 PLAISTED, Trent..... * 10-16 0-0 1-2 5 7 12 2 21 1 4 1 0 30

45 TAVERNARI, Jonathan. * 10-22 5-11 4-4 0 7 7 2 29 1 4 0 2 36

01 LOYD, JR., Michael.. 0-0 0-0 0-2 0 0 0 0 0 3 0 0 0 9

10 IVANOVIC, Vuk....... 1-3 0-0 4-5 2 1 3 0 6 1 0 0 0 10

32 FREDETTE, Jimmer.... 0-2 0-2 0-1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 12

41 COLLINSWORTH, Chris. 1-3 0-0 0-0 1 4 5 4 2 0 0 0 0 13

TEAM................ 2 2

Totals.............. 28-63 7-22 15-20 12 25 37 20 78 12 10 1 4 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 13-33 39.4% 2nd Half: 15-30 50.0% Game: 44.4% DEADB

3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 4-13 30.8% 2nd Half: 3-9 33.3% Game: 31.8% REBS

F Throw % 1st Half: 11-14 78.6% 2nd Half: 4-6 66.7% Game: 75.0% 0

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HOME TEAM: No. 6 Louisville 3-1

TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS

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

01 Terrence Williams... * 3-12 1-3 4-6 1 9 10 2 11 2 7 0 2 37

05 Earl Clark.......... * 7-13 0-4 3-4 2 5 7 4 17 2 0 0 0 38

32 Derrick Caracter.... * 10-12 0-0 4-6 5 6 11 4 24 0 3 0 0 23

33 Andre Mcgee......... * 0-3 0-2 1-2 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 24

34 Jerry Smith......... * 3-4 2-3 3-4 1 1 2 1 11 1 1 0 2 35

02 Preston Knowles..... 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1

10 Edgar Sosa.......... 1-5 0-1 0-1 0 1 1 2 2 1 1 0 0 15

20 Will Scott.......... 2-4 2-4 0-0 0 0 0 2 6 0 1 0 0 13

43 Terrance Farley..... 2-2 0-0 0-1 0 3 3 3 4 0 2 0 0 14

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

Totals.............. 28-55 5-17 15-24 12 27 39 20 76 6 16 0 4 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 14-20 70.0% 2nd Half: 14-35 40.0% Game: 50.9% DEADB

3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 2-4 50.0% 2nd Half: 3-13 23.1% Game: 29.4% REBS

F Throw % 1st Half: 7-11 63.6% 2nd Half: 8-13 61.5% Game: 62.5% 0

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Officials: Dave Libbey, Don McAllister, Kevin Cutler

Technical fouls: BYU Cougars-None. No. 6 Louisville-None.

Attendance:

Score by Periods 1st 2nd Total

BYU Cougars................... 41 37 - 78

No. 6 Louisville.............. 37 39 - 76

Points in the paint-BY 36,LOU 30. Points off turnovers-BY 22,LOU 9.

2nd chance points-BY 10,LOU 14. Fast break points-BY 10,LOU 4.

Bench points-BY 8,LOU 12. Score tied-7 times. Lead changed-8 times.

Last FG-BY 2nd-02:27, LOU 2nd-00:02.

Largest lead-BY by 10 1st-02:52, LOU by 5 1st-17:48.

Tags: Results