Senior guard Mike Hall leads BYU this year with a 13.2 points per game scoring average. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
BYU (2-8) travels to play in-state foe Weber State (4-5) Thursday at 7 p.m. in Ogden at the Dee Events Center. There will be no live television broadcast. The radio broadcast can be heard on KSL Newsradio 1160 (KSL.com).
UP NEXT FOR THE COUGARS
The Cougars return home to play Southern Utah after Christmas on Tuesday at 7 p.m. (No TV).
BYU GAME #11 FAST FACTS
BYU COUGARS (2-8, 0-0 MWC) vs. WEBER STATE WILDCATS (4-5, 0-0 BIG SKY)
THURSDAY, DEC. 23, 2004
DEE EVENTS CENTER (12,000)
OGDEN, UTAH, 7:00 p.m. MST
BYU, Steve Cleveland (131-95 in eighth season; same overall)
WSU, Joe Cravens (96-60 in sixth season; 151-112 in 10th year overall)
BYU leads, 19-10 (Last meeting: BYU 86, WSU 65, last season in Provo - Dec. 20, 2003)
KSL 1160, BYU Sports Network (Greg Wrubell calls play-by-play with Mark Durrant adding commentary)
Live audio is available at byucougars.com/basketball_m/ (select 2004-05 schedule)
COUGAR QUICK HITS
- Steve Cleveland's young squad meshes 10 players who did not suit up for BYU last year with six returning lettermen. Of those returning, senior Mike Hall started in 28 of 30 games last year while averaging 12.8 ppg, sophomore Garner Meads made 18 starts (averaged 16 minutes in 29 games, 4.2 ppg) and senior Jared Jensen started 8 games (averaged 12.1 minutes in 27 games, 3.8 ppg). The other three players who played for BYU last season include senior Terry Nashif (averaged 7.4 minutes in 23 games, 1.0 ppg), sophomore Mike Rose (averaged 7.9 minutes in 26 games, 3.9 ppg) and sophomore Austin Ainge (averaged 4.5 minutes in 8 games, 1.3 ppg).
- The 10 BYU players averaging double-digit minutes this season include seven sophomores and three seniors. Of BYU's freshmen top-20 signing class, only F/C Chris Miles is currently playing (9.7 minutes). Both David Burgess (ankles) and Trent Plaisted (knees) are currently out while top guard prospect and Arizona Player of the Year Lee Cummard has not been with the Cougars this season after opting to serve an LDS Church mission. He will join the Cougars next season after returning from his mission early.
- Playing a tough schedule, BYU has played four Pac-10 opponents already this season and two nationally ranked ACC teams. BYU's two wins are over Chaminade (77-56) and Boise State (90-77).
- Senior guard Mike Hall leads BYU in scoring as the only Cougar averaging double figures (13.2 ppg). Sophomore guards Mike Rose and Austin Ainge each contributes 9.2 ppg. Sophomore swingman Keena Young leads BYU in rebounding (6.7 rpg) while sophomore forward Garner Meads adds 4.9 rpg.
Ã½ BYU is shooting .401 from the floor, .351 from behind the arc and .728 from the line.
- Weber State will be BYU's third game of six scheduled in-state contests this season. The Cougars are 0-2 thus far after being swept by Utah State. BYU will host Southern Utah next Tuesday and then plays Utah twice during Mountain West Conference play.
LOOKING AT WEBER STATE
Weber State is 4-5 coming into this week's matchup with wins against Utah Valley State College, Albertson College, and Elon (twice) and losses against Winthrop, UW-Green Bay, Southern Utah, Utah State and Monday night's 71-58 defeat at the hands of the UVSC Wolverines in the second game of a home-and-home series this season. The Wildcats return two starters in 6-3 junior guard Jamaal Jenkins and 6-11 senior center Lance Allred as well as four letterwinners from last year's 15-14 squad. Allred leads the team in both ppg with 16.6 on 54.5 percent shooting and rebounds, pulling down 10.5 per game. He scored 22 points at UVSC Monday and 32 points against Elon last Saturday on 13-14 shooting. Junior guard Terrell Stovall, a transfer from Pasadena JC who has started all eight games he has played in this season, is second on the team in scoring with 9.5 ppg while Pepperdine transfer and 6-8 forward David Patten is a close third, averaging 9.2 ppg. Junior forward Troy Goodell is second in rebounds with 6.4 and leads the Wildcats from beyond the arc, shooting 40 percent (8-20) on the year. Weber State is averaging 61.2 points per game on 42.1 percent shooting, including a 28.2 percent mark from three-point range, while allowing opponents to score 62.2 points per game on 45.9 percent shooting and 35.8 percent from beyond the arc. The Wildcats also own an 8.2 rebound advantage over their opponents.
UTAH VALLEY DOWNS WILDCATS MONDAY NIGHT, 71-58
Ronnie Price scored 30 points to lead Utah Valley State to a 71-58 victory over Weber State on Monday night. The Wolverines (3-6) opened the second half with a 17-1 to take a 47-26 lead with 15 minutes to play. David Heck had half of his career-high 16 points in the run, including two 3-pointers, while Price scored six. Lance Allred had 22 points and 14 rebounds for Weber State (4-5), but the Wolverines held him scoreless over the first 11 minutes of the second half. Utah Valley State committed a season-low seven turnovers and shot 45 percent from the field, compared with 35 percent shooting for the Wildcats.
WEBER STATE'S PROBABLE STARTERS
POS. # NAME HT. WT. YR. PPG RPG
G 4 Jamaal Jenkins 6-3 180 Jr. 3.5 1.9
G 5 Terrell Stovall 6-3 185 Jr. 9.5 2.1
G 10 Brett Cox 6-0 180 So. 7.1 2.2
F 1 Coric Riggs 6-4 210 Jr. 5.9 4.2
C 50 Lance Allred 6-11 230 Jr. 16.6 10.5
BYU SERIES vs. WEBER STATE
The Cougars and Wildcats have met at least once every year for a total of 29 times dating back to 1973, missing only the 1979 and 1980 seasons. BYU owns a 19-10 advantage in those matchups, including a perfect 15-0 mark against Weber State in Provo. The Cougars are also 5-2 against the Wildcats under current BYU head coach Steve Cleveland.
BYU SERIES RECORD VS. WEBER STATE
Overall Series Record: BYU leads 19-10
BYU Record in Provo: 15-0
BYU Record in Ogden: 4-10
BYU Record at Neutral Sites: 0-0
BYU Record under Steve Cleveland: 5-2
BYU Record in Overtime Games: 2-2* (0-2 Rd, 2-0 Hm)
*BYU is 0-1 in 2OT games, lost in Ogden in 1983
Last Overtime Game: 1992, lost at Weber St, 77-83
Longest BYU Win Streak: 3, four times (1978-81,
85-87, 89-91, 99-present)
Longest Weber State Win Streak: 1 (10 times)
Largest BYU Margin of Victory: 33, 104-71 in 1987
Largest WSU Margin of Victory: 21, 96-75 in 1976
Most Points Scored by BYU: 104 in 1987
Most Points Scored by Weber State: 97 in 1996
LAST YEAR'S OUTING -- COUGARS IMPROVE TO 7-1 WITH WIN OVER WEBER STATE
PROVO -- Behind another dominating performance from senior center Rafael Araujo and his game-high 23 points, BYU defeated the Weber State Wildcats 86-65 Saturday night in the Marriott Center. The Cougars improve to 7-1, while the Wildcats drop to 5-4. Araujo also pulled down a game-high seven rebounds and has now led the Cougars in points and rebounds in six consecutive games. He also shot 11-for-14 from the floor. The Cougars shot a season-high tying 58.2 percent of their shots, in avenging a loss to the Wildcats last season. "I thought that when the game was on the line defensively, our defense was as good as it's been," said BYU coach Steve Cleveland. "I thought we took them out of what they wanted to do, but obviously it was a big loss not having Ocokoljic. We knew that, but you still have to play the game. We felt like we needed to stay with our game plan, but it did get sloppy at the end." The Wildcats struck first in the game with a quick field goal to take a 2-0 lead, but it would prove to be WSU's only lead of the contest as BYU answered with an 11-0 run to take a commanding 11-2 lead. Hall spurred the run with a three-point play and a 3-pointer, enroute to a career-high 22 points. WSU came out a tentative team in the first half, as BYU continued to widen its lead. Junior guard Kevin Woodberry continued the Cougars' surge with a trey at the 13:18 mark to put BYU up 17-5. "Defensively, the first 10 or 12 minutes was as good a defensive effort as we've had all season," Cleveland said. A lay-up by Woodberry, followed by a Hall dunk gave the Cougars a 29-10 lead and forced a Wildcats timeout at the 5:56 mark. After an Anthony Jackson made free throw, Araujo slammed a field goal home to give the Cougars' a 20-point lead, their largest of the half, 31-11. From there WSU outscored BYU 14-9 to narrow the half time deficit to 14 points, at 38-24, BYU. Araujo and Hall led the Cougars with 12 points a piece in the half. The second half was in marked contrast to the first, as the Wildcats came out of the chute, a hot shooting team. BYU, though, countered with even hotter shooting to stem the WSU tide. The Cougars started the half 8-for-8 on field goals. With 10:56 to play in the half, BYU was shooting 92.9% (13-14) and WSU was knocking shots down at an 83.3% (10-12) clip. Araujo helped to set the tone at the start of the half with three quick buckets, but it was Hall who brought the crowd to its feet, as he slashed to the basket down the left baseline and tomahawk jammed the ball over a Wildcats player at the 17:42 mark. Senior forward Jake Shoff fouled out scoreless for the game, but he single-handedly kept the momentum with BYU as he stole the ball from WSU's Lance Allred on three consecutive possessions early in the half. "Jake Shoff did a good job," Cleveland said. "He gave us energy when we started to slow down." The Cougars continued fend off the Wildcats and slowly built on their lead. Senior guard Mark Bigelow hit a trey at the 13:59 mark to give BYU a 22-point cushion at 61-39. Araujo then put down a breakaway dunk at the 12:09 mark to give the Cougars a 24-point edge at 67-43. Woodberry then hit another shot from downtown at the 9:20 mark to give BYU their largest lead of the game at 75-50, but that would be the Cougars' final field goal until a Garner Meads dunk with 33 seconds to go. With a bulk of its reserves finishing the game, BYU struggled offensively, as WSU finished the game on a 15-8 run. "They were tougher and better than us," Weber State coach Joe Cravens said. "They kind of, I guess, out-competed us and out-toughed us." Bigelow tied a career-high with six assists on the night to go with nine points. Senior guard Luiz Lemes continues to excel in leading the team as he dished out a game-high nine assists.
While Utah State has already wrapped up the old Oquirrh Bucket and the Utah basketball bragging rights that go along with it by virtue of a 4-0 record against in-state teams this season, the Cougars are just getting warmed up in in-state play. BYU is 0-2 so far this season against Utah teams with two losses to the Aggies, but the Cougars have four games remaining against in-state foes. In addition to BYU's matchup with Weber State Thursday, the Cougars play Southern Utah on Tuesday in Provo and then face the University of Utah twice, on Jan. 31 and Feb. 26, during Mountain West Conference play.
BYU's LAST OUTING - COUGARS FALL IN BATTLE WITH NO. 13 NC STATE
PROVO -- Senior captains Mike Hall and Jared Jensen stepped up to the challenge in facing the No. 13 ranked N.C. State Wolfpack, but the Cougars fell short in a hard-fought battle, losing 61-72 in the Marriott Center. Hall, who was held to five points in the first half, finished the game with 18 points, while Jensen contributed 14 points in a high-powered second half. "I was proud to be the coach of BYU," coach Steve Cleveland said. "I haven't been able to say that after every game this year." The Cougars struggled early in the first half, falling behind 9-0 to the Wolfpack to start the game. BYU did not score until the 16-minute mark when Austin Ainge hit a three-pointer. Last year's ACC Player of Year, Julius Hodge, got off to a quick start to push the Wolfpack lead to 20-7, scoring 14 of his 22 points before the half. For the Cougars, Jensen found his groove down low in the post, scoring 10 points, but the Wolfpack's late drive in the half gave them a comfortable 40-18 lead going into the locker room, marking the second time this season that the Cougars have been held under 20 points in the first period of play. In the second half, the Cougars came out on fire with a 9-2 run, while the Wolfpack were ice cold. BYU held the NC State to only 17 percent (5-28) shooting from the three-point line for the game. Midway through the half, Cougar guard Mike Rose caught fire, scoring all of his points with three long bombs from beyond the arc. The Cougars continued to cut into the Wolfpack lead with an Austin Ainge reverse lay-up to bring the Cougars to within nine. Yet, nine points was the closest the Cougars could get before falling in the end. The Cougars outscored the Wolfpack 43-32 in the second half. "I asked them to let me look them in the eyes at the end of the game and know they played well," Cleveland said. "And they did." Ainge had a career-high eight assists and added nine points, while teammate Kenna Young matched his rebounding career-high with 10. The Cougars shot an outstanding 51 percent from the field in the second half compared to their 20 percent in the first. At 2-8 on the season, BYU will now travel to play in-state foe Weber State Thursday night in Ogden at 7 p.m.
YOUNG TEAM FACING STRONG SCHEDULE
BYU's schedule includes 10 teams that finished in the top three in their respective league standings last year, with eight finishing as either the league champion or runner-up. Seven teams played in the NCAA Tournament and five were invited to the NIT, while eight opponents achieved 20-win seasons last year. North Carolina, North Carolina State and Stanford all finished the season in the final top-25 rankings. The Cougars have played two teams from the ACC in the same season for the first time in nearly 50 years and they also have faced four teams from the Pac-10 for the first time since 1998-99. The last time BYU had a schedule with two ACC teams was the 1955-56 season when the Cougars played at both NC State and Wake Forest.
BYU is off to a 2-8 start playing a strong schedule with a young team that includes seven sophomores and three freshmen. This is BYU's slowest start since the 1996-97 season, the year prior to Steve Cleveland's arrival when BYU suffered through a program-worst 1-25 season.
Coach Cleveland has used eight different lineups in the first 10 games of the season. Cleveland went with experience the first two games of the year, starting seniors Terry Nashif, Jared Jensen and Mike Hall as well as sophomores Garner Meads and Mike Rose. However, since then, transfer Keena Young has started five games (two in place of an injured Meads), sophomore Austin Ainge and sophomore Jimmy Balderson, who came out of his redshirt season at Utah State, have started three games apiece, while transfer Sam Burgess, returning redshirt Derek Dawes and true freshman Chris Miles have all started one game.
INJURY ISSUES INSIDE
Sophomore center Derek Dawes has played the last two games with a broken thumb. minutes). Freshman center David Burgess will have surgery (bone spurs, ankles) and will be out the rest of the season. Freshman forward Trent Plaisted is out indefinitely (knees) and junior forward Josh Burgess has been slowed by a back troubles.
AINGE PROVING POINT
Point guard Austin Ainge is one of BYU's young players taking advantage of his opportunity for playing time this season. He has been the team's most consistent player over the last six games while averaging 13.7 points, including a career-best 21 points on 6-of-9 shooting vs. Utah State and a career-high 8 assists vs. NC State in the last two games. He has started the last two games and is now earning the majority of the point guard minutes with senior Terry Nashif coming off the bench. Overall, he is tied for second on the team in scoring at 9.2 ppg. He is second on the team in shooting percentage and leads among perimeter players at 49.2 percent and has the team's second-best three-point percentage (.412) behind shooting guard Mike Rose (.429).
CURRENT BYU WIN/LOSS STREAKS ...
At home 0-2
On the road 0-2
On a neutral floor 0-1
At home vs. Nonconference 0-2
At home vs. MWC 12-0
On the road vs. Nonconference 0-3
On the road vs. MWC 3-0
On a neutral floor vs. Nonconference 0-1
On a neutral floor vs. MWC 0-1
at regular season tournament 1-0
at MWC Tournament 0-1
at NCAA Tournament 0-5
at NIT 0-1