Game 1 - BYU Hosts Loyola Marymount Friday

Redshirt freshman Trent Plaisted led BYU in its two exhibition wins, averaging 19 points and nine rebounds.

After two exhibition victories, BYU coach Dave Rose will put his team on the floor to open the regular season Friday against Loyola Marymount University. The game is set to tip at 7:05 p.m. MST in the Marriott Center in Provo, Utah.

The game will be broadcast live on KSL Newsradio, which can be heard on 102.7 FM or 1160 AM. Greg Wrubell and Mark Durrant will call the game, which is also available online at KSL.com.

"It was a good experience for our team to play two pretty disciplined teams in our exhibtion games." Rose said. "Loyola Marymount is an experienced team with two senior starters, plus a redshirt JC starter and two redshirt juniors. They have good perimeter players. Loyola likes to push the ball and get it up and down the floor. It should be an exciting game."

The Lions are coached by Rodney Tention, who is in his first year after eight seasons as an assistant to Lute Olson at Arizona.

In BYU's two exhibition wins, a freshman led the team in scoring. Redshirt freshman Trent Plaisted led BYU against Seattle Pacific with 27 points while Lee Cummard paced the Cougars with 23 points against Victoria. Plaisted added 12 rebounds in BYU's 86-72 win over Seattle Pacific. Cummard made 10-of-16 shots while adding five rebounds, four assists and two steals in 27 minutes in an 81-54 victory over the University of Victoria.

UP NEXT

BYU will play its road opener on Tuesday (8 p.m. MST) against Washington State. The game will be played in Spokane at Spokane Arena, which is where the Cougars faced Connecticut in the 2003 NCAA Tournament.

GAME #1 FAST FACTS

BYU COUGARS (0-0, 0-0 MWC) vs. LOYOLA MARYMOUNT LIONS (0-0, 0-0 WCC)

FRIDAY, NOV. 18, 2005

MARRIOTT CENTER (22,700)

PROVO, UTAH

7:05 p.m. (MST)

Coaches:

BYU, Dave Rose (0-0 entering first year; same overall)

LMU, Rodney Tention (0-0 entering first year; same overall)

Series:

LMU leads 1-0, defeating BYU 35-32 at LMU on Dec. 30, 1936

TV:

None

Radio:

KSL Newsradio, BYU Sports Network (Greg Wrubell, play-by-play; Mark Durrant, game analysis)

Web:

Live audio and live stats are available at byucougars.com/basketball_m/ (select 2005-06 schedule)

LOOKING AT LOYOLA MARYMOUNT

The Lions return 12 of 13 players from last season's 11-17 team that finished 8th in the West Coast Conference, including four starters and four seniors. Junior forward Matthew Knight is back after leading LMU with 15.4 points per game last year while earning Honorable Mention All-WCC honors. The 6-foot-8 Australian was sixth in the league in field goal percentage last season, hitting 51.2 percent of his shots from the floor, and 11th in rebounding, averaging 5.9 per game. He scored 21 points and pulled down eight rebounds in the Lions' exhibition win over Cal State San Bernardino. Knight will be joined on the court by junior point guard Brandon Worthy, who led all scorers with 22 points while dishing out 10 assists in LMU's win over the Coyotes. Worthy, a 6-foot-2 California native, was fifth in the conference in assists last year, averaging 3.74 per contest, and second in steals with 2.00 per game while scoring 11.8 ppg. LMU also returns its second-leading rebounder from last season in junior forward Daryl Pelgram, who pulled down 4.3 boards per game. Senior Chris Ayer, a 6-foot-10 center, should also help the Lions this season as he recorded eight rebounds and 13 points in just 20 minutes of action against CSSB. The Lions will be without the services of graduated guard Charles Brown, who was third on the team in scoring with 10.4 ppg. As a team, LMU scored 67.8 ppg on 41.4 percent shooting from the field last season while allowing opponents to score 70.6 ppg. The Lions were outrebounded 36.3 to 33.6 but led the league in steals, averaging 8.71 per game. Rodney Tention begins his first season as head coach of the Lions in 2005-06 after eight years as an assistant at Arizona.

LAST OUTING - Lions Roar in Exhibition Win

LOS -- Loyola Marymount debuted its new up-tempo offense Saturday night in an 86-72 exhibition win over Cal State San Bernardino. The Lions were led by four players in double figures, including junior Brandon Worthy with 22 points and 10 assists, while junior Matthew Knight added 21 points and eight rebounds. Knight and senior Chris Ayer, who added 13 points with eight rebounds to the scoresheet, used their size down low to outscore the Coyotes 42-26 in the paint. "We will take an ugly win," said first-year LMU head coach Rodney Tention. "Every game we want to establish the inside and it was even more of a focus tonight as we had an advantage down low. We did a good job in using our size as an advantage." The size also helped the Lions on the boards as they finished with a 44-23 edge in rebounding. The Lions finished with 12 offensive rebounds that led to 18 second-chance points. "We are committed to rebounding," said Tention. "That is an important part of us establishing the inside game." LMU jumped out early, taking a lead as large as 20 with 1:47 left in the first half after a Wes Wardrop, who finished with 11 points, six rebounds and five assists, three-pointer. The Lions went into the locker room with a 46-30 lead. The Coyotes climbed back into thanks in large part to 24 turnovers by the Lions. Rummel Clark-Watts cut the Lions once double-digit lead to just seven, 79-72, with 4:24 remaining. "We turned the ball over a little too much," said Tention. "We showed that we can score some points. The biggest thing for us is to cut down on the turnovers." With the lead at just seven, the Lions defense stiffened and did not allow a point the rest of the way. Knight picked up one of his three offensive rebounds and put in a lay-up with 3:29 remaining to make it a nine-point game, 81-72, and he then hit a pair of free throws with 1:54 to put the lead back to double figures.

SERIES HISTORY

The Cougars and Lions have met only once as Loyola emerged victorious on Dec. 30, 1936 in a tight 35-32 battle held on the Lions' homecourt.

BYU IN SEASON OPENERS

BYU has a 72-31 record in season openers for a .699 winning percentage. BYU is 55-14 (.797) when opening at home, 14-14 (.500) when opening on an opponent's floor, and 3-3 (.500) when opening on a neutral floor. In the last eight seasons Dave Rose was serving as an assistant at BYU, the Cougars were 7-1 in season openers and 4-0 when opening at home.

EXHIBITION NUMBERS

The Cougars made nearly half of their overall attempts in their two exhibition games, going 66-of-133 for a .496 field-goal percentage. They shot .385 from long range, going 10-for-26. From the line, BYU shot .658 while making 38 trips to the charity stripe in the two outings. While BYU has only played two unofficial exhibitions to date, the Cougars seem to be responding well to the new attacking-style offense in terms of assist/turnover ratio compared to last season. The Cougars averaged 21 assists per game in their two exhibitions, compared to 12.3 assists last season (and 16.5 in last year's two exhibition wins). BYU averaged 12.0 turnovers in this year's exhibitions compared to 14.6 turnovers per game last year (and 17.5 turnovers in last year's two exhibitions).

AINGE TURNS IN SOLID ASSIST/TURNOVER RATIO

Junior guard Austin Ainge recorded eight assists against Seattle Pacific with only one turnover, which came with 16 seconds left in the game.

BLOCKED SHOTS

BYU recorded six blocks in each of its two exhibition games. The Cougars only reached that mark once all of last season with seven against Utah State.

FRESHMEN SHOW PROMISE IN EXHIBITION WINS

Both of the Cougars' exhibition games showcased rising stars as two freshmen led the team in scoring. Trent Plaisted led BYU against Seattle Pacific with 27 points while Lee Cummard paced the Cougars with 23 points against Victoria.

COUGARS FINISHING STRONG IN SECOND HALF

BYU used a19-4 second-half run to build a 60-39 cushion and cruise to the 81-54 victory over Victoria. After a 39.4 percent shooting performance in the first half, the Cougars warmed up to sink 60 percent of their shots from the floor in the second half. In BYU's second exhibition win over Seattle Pacific, the Cougars scored 53 points in the second half, their highest point output (though unofficial) in a half since Dec. 31, 2004 when they scored 59 in the second half against Santa Clara.

SCORING FOR THE COUGARS

In BYU's two exhibition wins, Trent Plaisted and Jimmy Balderson were the two Cougars to score in double figures in both outings. By average, Plaisted averaged 19 points and Balderson 11.5 over those two games. Lee Cummard, who boasts a 15.5 average in the two games, with a 23-point performance and an eight-point effort, is the third Cougar to average double figures in the two exhibition wins.

NEWCOMERS PLAY WELL IN EXHIBITION OPENER

A trio of newcomers helped BYU open exhibition play with an 81-54 victory over the University of Victoria at the Marriott Center in front of 8,407 fans. Freshman Lee Cummard led the way for the Cougars with 23 points in his debut, fueling a second-half surge that turned a tight first half into a blowout. With 19 of his game-high total coming in the second frame, Cummard paced BYU to outscore the Vikes by 23 points in the final 20 minutes while adding five rebounds, four assists and two steals. Trent Plaisted, a freshman who received a medical redshirt last season after playing in five games, showed his return to full health by posting 11 points and six rebounds as the starting center. Junior-college transfer Fernando Malaman made his presence felt early, scoring seven points in his first 2:20 of playing time while adding a rebound and a block. The 6-foot-7 junior from Limeira, Brazil, finished with 11 points on 5-of-6 shooting and had two blocks.

NOTABLES FROM VICTORIA GAME

ý Freshman Lee Cummard didn't take long to get involved in the Cougar offense, compiling two assists in the first 1:40 of the contest. Cummard earned the first assist on the first possession when he dished to Trent Plaisted for the first points of the game. On BYU's second possession Cummard scored on a tip-in off of a Plaisted miss. That was only the beginning for the freshman as he finished with 23 points as the game's leading scorer.

ý Junior Keena Young led the Cougars with three steals.

ý Four players led BYU with six rebounds each. Junior guards Austin Ainge and Jimmy Balderson shared honors with the redshirt freshmen post players Trent Plaisted and David Burgess. Burgess led BYU with 11 rebounds at Cougar Tipoff.

ý Senior Brock Reichner dished out a team-best five assists while adding eight points.

SAM BURGESS TO REDSHIRT

Junior guard Sam Burgess will redshirt the upcoming season. The 6-foot-3 guard from Alpine, Utah, is one of nine juniors on the roster this year. Junior Vuk Ivanovic will also redshirt while he sits out the season due to NCAA transfer rules. Burgess scored a game-high 21 points at Cougar Tipoff, the team's annual blue-white scrimmage. He went 7-for-12 from the floor, including 4-for-6 on threes, and was 3-of-4 from the line while adding five rebounds, one assist and one steal in 33 minutes on the floor.

"As a coach there are guys you love to coach and Sam is that kind of player," Rose explained. "He has a competitive spirit, is a good athlete and plays to win. He also has the mental toughness to use this year the best. He will work hard and improve and still help our team this season (in practice). He is plenty good enough to play this year but with so many players in this class, we needed to address that situation. As a staff, we feel this will help our team in the long run and also be good for Sam. We want to invest in Sam and commit to him another year. In that third year, he's going to be a player who will really help us."

BYU's LAST OUTING -- Plaisted Leads BYU to Exhibition Win over Seattle Pacific

PROVO -- Trent Plaisted had a double-double while leading BYU to an 86-72 roller-coaster victory over Seattle Pacific University in an exhibition game Thursday night. BYU head coach Dave Rose said the Cougars showed resilience in coming from behind to beat the feisty Falcons. "I thought initially we didn't do so well but we responded and came back," Rose said. "I like how we were able to play through an adverse situation." SPU led much of the game, putting together several runs to get a pair of double-digit leads. But depth prevailed as the Falcons ran out of gas and BYU ran away with the victory. The win improved the Cougars' exhibition record to 2-0. The Falcons are now 1-1 in exhibition games. Led by Dustin Bremerman, who scored nine first-half points, Seattle Pacific started the game on a 15-3 run in the first 3:20 of the first half. BYU countered with its own 8-1 run triggered by two Keena Young blocks on one SPU possession that energized the Cougars and turned into a fast break and a Jimmy Balderson three-pointer on the other end. Lee Cummard's fast-break dunk cut the Falcons' lead to one at 20-19. Seattle Pacific remained steady throughout the first half and didn't give up its lead until the 6:19 point in the first half when Jackson Emery's two foul shots gave the Cougars a 21-20 lead. The one-point margin was only BYU's second lead of the game and its first since the 19:23 mark. SPU, led by Robbie Will, answered back with six consecutive points to regain the lead and take a 35-33 advantage into halftime. The Falcons lead marked the first time since 2002 that the Cougars went into halftime trailing in an exhibition game. Like the start of the game, SPU came out in the second half firing on all cylinders. Bremerman nailed a three-pointer to cap a 12-2 run while extending the Falcons' lead to 47-35 and forcing the Cougars to take a time out. BYU countered with a 14-1 run of its own capped by a Plaisted three-point play to turn a twelve-point deficit into a one-point lead. When Balderson nailed a three-pointer with 10:42 remaining, the Cougars grabbed a 54-53 lead, which BYU would never relinquish as the Cougars pushed it to a game-high six points when Rashaun Broadus went coast-to-coast to put BYU ahead 59-53 and force an SPU timeout. Plaisted led all scorers and rebounders with 27 points and 12 boards. He is the first Cougar to record a double-double since Derek Dawes scored 14 points and grabbed 10 rebounds against New Mexico last January. Balderson added 13 points on 5-of-6 shooting from the field. "I was really pleased with Trent," Rose said. "You want to have young guys have big breakout games." SPU was led by the one-two punch of Will and Bremerman who combined for 41 points and 15 rebounds.

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