Game 7 - BYU Hosts Northern Kentucky Saturday

Trent Plaisted leads BYU in scoring this season, coming off a 19-point, 10-rebound outing on Wednesday. BYU plays Northern Kentucky Saturday at 7 p.m. in the Marriott Center. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)

GAME #7 FAST FACTS

BYU COUGARS (4-2, 0-0 MWC)

vs.

NORTHERN KENTUCKY NORSE (6-0, 3-0 Great Lakes Valley)

Saturday, Dec. 10, 2005

Marriott Center (22,700)

Provo, Utah

7:05 p.m. MST

Coaches:

BYU, Dave Rose (4-2 in first year; same overall)

NKU, Dave Bezold (20-15 in second season; same overall)

Series: First Meeting

TV: None

Radio:

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

Web:

Live audio and live stats broadcasts are available at www.byucougars.com/basketball_m/

BYU HOSTS NORTHERN KENTUCKY SATURDAY AT 7 P.M.

BYU stays at home to host Northern Kentucky (6-0, 3-0 Great Lakes Valley Conference) Saturday at 7 p.m. in the Marriott Center. The Division II Norse out of Highland Heights, Ky., will be playing the their first Division I opponent since the 1994-95 season when they face the Cougars Saturday. 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. The game is not being televised.

UP NEXT

With final exams being conducted next week, BYU will have a full week to prepare for Weber State (3-4, 0-0 Big Sky). The Wildcats visit the Marriott Center on Saturday, Dec. 17 at 6 p.m. BYU's first televised contest of the season, the game is a SportsWest telecast airing on KSL-TV, channel 5.

COUGAR QUICK HITS

-- Coming off a disappointing 9-21 season after five straight postseason appearances, BYU looks to return to the ranks of conference contenders and postseason invitees under the direction of new head coach Dave Rose.

-- Rose enters his first year leading the Cougars after serving the past eight seasons as Steve Cleveland's lead assistant, including five years as associate head coach. After Cleveland announced his resignation to take the Fresno State job, BYU moved quickly to promote Rose to BYU's head position.

-- Among BYU's returning players, honorable mention All-MWC guard Austin Ainge was the team's second-leading scorer and top assist man last year, and junior forward Keena Young was BYU's leading rebounder. Other returners with starting experience include junior swingman Jimmy Balderson, who represented Canada at the World University Games this summer; junior center Derek Dawes, who made 13 starts in the middle last year; and junior guard Mike Rose, who made seven starts last year and averaged 7.7 points while making a team-leading 56 treys. Lone senior Brock Reichner has started the last five games this season after mostly limited action last year.

-- Trent Plaisted leads BYU in scoring (15.8), followed by Jimmy Balderson (12.8). Plaisted is also the top Cougar rebounder (5.8), followed by Keena Young (4.5). Rashaun Broadus is the top assist maker (5.2), followed by Austin Ainge (3.3). The Cougars average 79.7 points and shoot .484 as a team, .426 from long range and .691 from the line. Cougar opponents average 72 points on .427 shooting, .341 from three and .740 from the line.

LOOKING AT NORTHERN KENTUCKY

The Northern Kentucky University Norse are off to a 6-0 start, including a 3-0 record in the Great Lakes Valley Conference. The Division II program won its first five games at home before hitting the road for three games in five days. The Norse won their first game of the trip on Tuesday at Indianapolis, but were unable to complete Thursday's game at Saint Joseph's in Rensselaer, Ind., before the game was suspended due to a power outage. NKU's game at BYU will mark the first time in 11 years that the Norse have met a Division I opponent in the regular season. NKU has not played a Division I opponent since the 1994-95 season, when the Norse dropped an 85-63 decision at Toledo. Junior Kevin Reinhardt, a 6-foot-4 forward, leads the Norse in scoring (15.2) and rebounding (7.5) in 31.2 minutes per game. NKU 6-foot-3 junior guard/forward Kevin Schappell adds 14.3 points coming off the bench in 28 minutes per game. Last week he averaged 20 points in two GLVC victories. He began with a 16-point performance during a 58-55 win over Rockhurst before scoring a career-high 24 points to lead NKU past Drury, 64-46. In that game, Schappell made five three-pointers and had three steals. Schappell is shooting 62.8 percent from the field and 61.9 percent from three-point range, while converting 86.4 percent of his free throws. His 13 treys leads the team. Norse 6-foot-8 senior center Gavin Ludgood averaged 13 points in last week's two victories. After Tuesday's road win, Ludgood averages 9.3 points overall and is shooting 58.1 percent from the field. NKU leads the GLVC in free-throw percentage (.783) and features seven players shooting at least 80 percent from the charity line. NKU also ranks No. 1 in the GLVC in three-point percentage at .458. The Norse shoot .483 overall while opponents have shot .430 from the floor, .347 from long range and .688 from the line. NKU averages 69.5 points while allowing 60.3 ppg.

NORSE GAME THURSDAY SUSPENDED

RENSSELAER, Ind. - A power outage in the Scharf Alumni Fieldhouse caused Thursday night's Northern Kentucky at No. 8 Saint Joseph's game to be suspended in the second half. Saint Joseph's owned a 57-40 lead with 6:30 left in the game when the power went out in the gym. The Pumas entered the game ranked No. 8 nationally and are 7-0, while NKU is also unbeaten (6-0). The game will be resumed at the point of stoppage later in the season. The most likely date to complete the game is Feb. 22, but an official announcement will be made next week.

NKU's PREVIOUS OUTING -- Morton, Finnell Spark Norse Victory at Indianapolis

INDIANAPOLIS - The depth of Northern Kentucky University paid off once again during a 67-61 victory against Indianapolis on Tuesday night at Nicoson Hall. As a result, the unbeaten Norse (6-0 overall) are in sole possession of first place in the Great Lakes Valley Conference East with a 3-0 record. Harrison Morton came off the bench and scored eight key points in the second half for NKU, and reserve guard Billy Finnell drained a clutch 3-pointer in the final minute to seal the victory. Kevin Schappell, who was named the GLVC Player of the Week on Monday, added nine points off the bench as NKU won in Nicoson Hall for the first time since the 2001-02 season. The Norse bench totaled 27 points, 12 rebounds and four steals Tuesday night. Morton, a sophomore forward from Lexington, Ky., had three steals. NKU head coach Dave Bezold was not surprised by Morton's performance. "He had two very good practices this week, and I told our coaches that he had a different bounce about him," Bezold said. "He came up very big in the second half when we were stagnant offensively. Harrison has been working hard in practice, and it showed on the court tonight." Kevin Reinhardt finished with 16 points and seven rebounds to lead NKU, while Vincent Humphrey added 14 points. The Norse shot 52.2 percent from the field - including 66.7 percent in the second half - to hold off the Greyhounds. NKU held a 27-17 lead with just under six minutes left in the first half when David McFarland hit a 3-pointer, but Indianapolis closed with a 12-4 run to pull within 31-29 at the break. The Norse led by seven points several times in the second half, but a layup by Braxton Mills with 1:33 remaining pulled Indianapolis within 60-57. Mills was also fouled on the play, but he missed the free throw. NKU called a timeout with 42 seconds remaining and the shot clock showing 11 seconds. With the shot clock winding down, Finnell launched a 3-pointer that found the bottom of the net and extinguished any last-second comeback hopes for Indianapolis. "They had the momentum, and they were playing a zone against us," Bezold said. "Billy stepped up and took the big shot. Once it when in, it was a big relief." Gavin Ludgood scored eight points for the Norse, and McFarland added six points. Finnell finished with four points, three assists and four rebounds.

NKU's PROBABLE STARTERS

No Name Pos Ht Wt Cl Hometown / Previous School PPG RPG

42 Kevin Reinhardt F 6-4 180 Jr. Wilder, Ky. / Campbell County 15.2 7.5

34 Gavin Ludgood C 6-8 235 Sr. Clarksville, Ark. / Clarksville 9.3 4.3

5 Vincent Humphrey G/F 6-4 195 So. Plainfield, Ill. / Fenwick 9.0 2.5

10 Scott Bibbins G 5-9 145 Fr. Taylor Mill, Ky. / Holy Cross 0.7 0.3

22 Mark Hawkins G 6-2 185 So. Cincinnati, Ohio / Finneytown 3.0 0.8

SERIES NOTES

This is the first meeting between the two teams. Northern Kentucky will be facing its first Division I opponent since the 1994-95 season. BYU's last game against a Division II team was its 110-70 victory over Montana State--Billings last season on Jan. 11 in the Marriott Center. BYU also faced Division II Chaminade last year at the Maui Invitational, winning by a 77-56 score. The last time BYU played a team from the state of Kentucky was on Nov. 25, 1994, when the Cougars defeated Louisville 75-60 at the Great Alaska Shootout. The last time a team from Kentucky played BYU in the Marriott Center was on Dec. 7, 1990, when the Cougars defeated Eastern Kentucky 90-86 in the Cougar Classic. In that game, BYU freshman center Shawn Bradley tied the NCAA record, which he still shares, with 14 blocked shots.

COUGARS SET TO HELP AT CHILDREN WITH CANCER CHRISTMAS PARTY

For the seventh year, the BYU men's basketball team has joined the Children with Cancer Christmas Foundation in an effort to raise money for families who have children with cancer and participate in the Foundation's annual Christmas party those families. This year's Christmas party will be held Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. in the LaVell Edwards Stadium Cougar Room. Parents will be invited to the Cougar Room on Tuesday to choose the gifts their children will receive. The gifts will then be distributed at the party. The BYU coaching staff and their wives will be helping the Foundation shop for gifts on Monday morning. This is the seventh year BYU coaches, players and their families have volunteered for the Christmas party. Though he has been heavily involved with the Foundation during his eight years as an assistant coach at BYU, this year will be head coach Dave Rose's first opportunity to serve as honorary chairman. "This has always been a cause I feel strongly about," said BYU coach Dave Rose. "It has been such a positive experience for the coaches, players and families and is a tremendous opportunity for community members to be involved in brightening the holiday season for these children." One hundred percent of the money donated to the Foundation will go directly towards the Christmas party for more than 90 families who have children with cancer living primarily in Utah County. A large portion of the money donated will purchase hundreds of toys that will enable these parents to have gifts under the Christmas tree for their children. In addition to all of these toys, the Christmas Party will include food, free entertainment, such as games and ornament decorating, and local celebrities including Santa, Cosmo and the BYU men's and women's basketball team. In addition to collecting money, the Foundation is collecting any unwrapped toys that can be dropped off at the nearest Far West Bank or Harmon's Down Town Auto Center located in Provo. For more information about donating to the Children With Cancer Christmas Foundation, contact Cheryl Rose at (801) 375-5768 or Bob Brockbank at (801) 802-8881. You can also visit their website at www.christmas-foundation.org. "The support we get from the community makes this event possible," Cheryl Rose said. "We couldn't serve these children without the donations of time, money and gifts we receive."

BYU's LAST OUTING -- Cougars Buck The Broncos

PROVO -- Freshman Trent Plaisted and junior Fernando Malaman led BYU with 19 and 17 points, respectively, as the Cougars (4-2) held off Boise State (3-3) 80-77 Wednesday night in the Marriott Center. After falling behind by eight points in the first half, the Cougars outscored the Broncos 44-33 in the second half to pick up the victory. Boise State took an early lead, starting the game on a 7-0 run. The Cougars battled back to tie the game 16-16 with 11:25 remaining in the first half. The Broncos held off the Cougars' first-half surge by relying on their three-point shot, going 6-for-10 from three-point range to take a 44-36 halftime lead. The Cougars came out strong in the second half, running the floor well and going on a 14-2 run to take their first lead of the game, 49-46, with 17:13 left to play. The Cougar run was led by senior Brock Reichner who hit back-to-back three-pointers. BYU had a 72-60 lead with 4:51 left in the game, but the Broncos fought back to tie the game at 75-75 with 2:12 remaining. After big baskets from both Plaisted and Malaman, Boise State's Tyler Tiedeman put up a three-pointer for a chance to tie the game, but the shot fell short and the Cougars pulled off the win, 80-77. Plaisted finished the night shooting 7-for-12 from the field and 5-for-8 from the free-throw line to pick up his 19 points. He also led the Cougars in rebounds with 10, recording the first double-double of his career as well as the first for the Cougars this season. Malaman's 17 points marked a career high for the forward. He shot 7-for-10 on the night, including 2-for-3 from the three-point line. He also rejected three shots on the night, which was also a career high. As a team, BYU struggled in the first half, shooting just 38.7 percent from the field, but improved in the second half with a 48.6 shooting percentage. After Boise State shot 6-for-10 from the three-point line, the Cougars picked up their perimeter defense and held the Broncos to just 1-for-7 three-point shooting in the second half. Boise State was led by forward Seth Robinson, who finished the game with 15 points, shooting 7-for-9 from the field. Guard Coby Karl also added 14 points for the Broncos, shooting 4-for-11 from the field, including 2-for-4 from the three-point line and 4-for-4 from the free-throw line.

WHAT WAS SAID AFTER THE GAME ...

BYU Head Coach Dave Rose:

-- "This is a team that's learning -- learning how to win and learning how to play. I thought it was a great game for our team."

-- "It's a learning process with this team. For the most part, we won this game because we gutted it out."

-- "You become a better team when guys make things happen for other players and not themselves."

-- "I told the guys in the locker room that games like this are what make teams better. You can't just play them; you've got to win them."

Boise State Head Coach Greg Graham:

-- "It was a very good college basketball game -- up tempo, lots of threes, and the big guys still got a lot of points. Kids on both sides were battling hard. Except for the outcome, you can't ask for a better basketball game."

-- "BYU's got a good ball club, and they're going to get better. They're a young, talented team."

BYU NOTES FROM LAST OUTING

-- After using 18 different starting lineups last season, the Cougars have used the same starting five in each of the last five games (Broadus, Reichner, Balderson, Malaman, Plaisted), going 4-1 in those games.

-- Individual Career Highs: Fernando Malaman - 17 points, 7 field goals made, 10 field goals attempted, 5 rebounds (tie), 3 blocks; Brock Reichner -- 3 three-point field goals made (tie), 7 three-point field goals attempted, 5 assists; Rashaun Broadus -- 11 points (tie); Trent Plaisted -- 10 rebounds.

-- Trent Plaisted recorded the first double-double by any Cougar this season with 19 points and 10 rebounds.

-- Plaisted also recorded his seventh dunk of the year with a high-flyer during BYU's 14-4 second-half run. The redshirt freshman has recorded at least one dunk in every game this season except against Southern Utah.

-- Five Cougars scored in double figures on the night for the first time since Dec. 28, 2004 against Southern Utah as Plaisted led all scorers with 19 points while Malaman added 17, Reichner recorded 12, Broadus posted 11 and Jimmy Balderson contributed 10.

-- BYU recorded 7 blocks on the night, setting a season high and equaling last year's season high.

-- The Cougars suffered through their worst shooting first half of the season against Boise State as they hit just 38.7 percent (12-31) of their shots from the floor in the first period of play.

-- BYU started off cold from the floor in the first half, making only one field goal -- a fade-away jumper from Trent Plaisted at the 17:17 mark -- through the first 5:54 of the game until Fernando Malaman connected from three-point range.

-- The Cougars benefited from solid defense during the scoring drought as they held Boise State scoreless for 2:41.

-- Senior Brock Reichner came out hot in the second half, hitting back-to-back three pointers to tie the game at 46-46 and then picking up a steal and dishing out an assist to Jimmy Balderson, who went up for the layup that turned into a three-point play to give BYU its first lead of the game and cap a 10-0 Cougar run. Seconds later, after Boise State head coach Greg Graham was whistled for a technical foul, Reichner converted one-of-two from the line and then drained another three-pointer to give the Cougars a 53-48 advantage.

-- BYU equaled the number of three-pointers it made in the first half less than five minutes into the second period, scoring three from downtown, all from Brock Reichner, in the first 4:14 of second-half play.

-- Boise State head coach Greg Graham was called for a technical foul at the 17:02 mark of the second half, marking the third time this season an opponent coach has been whistled for a technical foul (Billy Tubbs, Lamar, received two on Nov. 30).

-- The Cougars saw a 72-60 second-half lead quickly whittled down to just three points as BYU went scoreless from the field for 4:51.

SCORING FOR THE COUGARS

BYU is averaging an MWC-leading 79.7 points, led by redshirt freshman Trent Plaisted's 15.8 points per game. The 6-foot-11 forward/center has reached double figures in each game. Junior Jimmy Balderson adds 12.8 points per game as the second Cougar to average double figures. Three different Cougars have led the team in scoring in BYU's first six games (Plaisted three times, 20 at USC, 13 vs. Southern Utah and 19 vs. Boise State; Balderson twice, 18 vs. Loyola Marymount and 21 vs. Lamar; and senior Brock Reichner, 18 at Wash. State).

THREE-POINT ACCURACY AMONG NATION'S BEST

In the first release of the NCAA national statistics this week, BYU ranks eighth in the country from behind the arc (.449) through the first five games of the season (rankings released prior to Boise State game). The Cougars were shooting over 50 percent until making a season-low 26.1 percent at USC last Saturday and are now shooting .426 from beyond the arc. Prior to the USC game, BYU was one of only nine teams shooting 50 percent or better from long range. Now only one team in the nation (Indiana) is making 50 percent or better on threes. Individually, four Cougars are making 50 percent or more of their three-point attempts and eight Cougars have made a trey this year. Four Cougars are averaging one trey a game. Senior Brock Reichner has made a team-best 10 triples this year. Ironically, BYU's lowest three-point percentage comes from last year's team leader in that category. Junior Jimmy Balderson, who made 42 percent of his treys last year, is currently 5-for-22 on threes (.227) after going 1-for-10 in the last two games.

POINT PLAY ASSISTING IN VICTORY

BYU's Rashaun Broadus (5.2 apg) and Austin Ainge (3.3 apg) rank first and fifth, respectively, among Mountain West Conference players in assists per game average this season while helping the Cougars lead the MWC in team apg with 17. BYU's point guards have played well in the Cougars' victories. In BYU's season-opening loss to Loyola Marymount the two guards combined for six assists and five turnovers, and in the loss at USC they totaled seven assists and five turnovers. The assists-to-turnovers ratio has been significantly better in BYU's wins. Broadus and Ainge showed marked improvement in the Cougars' win at Washington State, where the two combined to dish out 10 assists while committing only two turnovers, as each posted a line of a game-high 5 assists with only one turnover. In BYU's victory over Southern Utah, they combined for 13 assists with only one turnover, as Ainge tied a career high with 8 assists without a turnover and Broadus had 3 assists and one turnover while scoring a season-best 11 points. Against Lamar, Broadus dished out a career-best 9 assists, including an assist on BYU's first six baskets, while Ainge added two assists to help BYU record a season-high 22 assists for the second straight game. Broadus recorded a team-high six assists against Boise State.

FRESHMEN WING PLAY

BYU's two freshman wings are contributing. Lee Cummard is averaging 4.8 points in 13.8 minutes while shooting .476 from the floor and .556 on threes. He has made 5-of-9 treys, including a triple BYU's first five games. Jackson Emery has also provided valuable production in his minutes this season. He scored nine points in nine minutes at USC, all in the second half, to help fuel BYU's comeback attempt. He is shooting 47.1 percent from the floor, 36.4 percent from long range, and is perfect from the line while averaging 4.0 points in 9.5 minutes. He has also been a solid defender for the Cougars, often helping guard the opponent's top perimeter player.

BYU BASKETBALL ON KSL NEWSRADIO (102.7 FM and 1160 AM)

The "Voice of the Cougars" is KSL Newsradio 1160's Greg Wrubell. He is in his 10th season as the play-by-play voice of BYU basketball. Wrubell, also the voice of BYU football, is joined by former Cougar lettermen Mark Durrant and Russell Larson (for select broadcasts) as color analysts. Durrant has been part of the KSL broadcast team for nine years while Larson is in his first season as an analyst. In addition to live coverage of every Cougar game, the following programs can be heard each week on KSL Newsradio.

COACH ROSE ON KSL NEWSRADIO ...

-- Coach's Corner with Dave Rose -- Mondays at 8:45 a.m.

-- The Dave Rose Show -- Mondays from 7-8 p.m.

THE DAVE ROSE SHOW ON KSL-TV

BYU coach Dave Rose's weekly television show airs each Sunday evening at 11 p.m. on KSL-TV, channel 5 in Salt Lakey City.

AttachmentSize
Game-7---BYU-Hosts-Northern-Kentucky-Saturday.pdf447.82 KB