The Cougars secured the 2009-10 Deseret First Duel trophy in women's basketball with their 54-37 victory.
PROVO -- The BYU women’s basketball team (19-8, 10-5) dominated the second Deseret Duel matchup 54-37 against the Utah Utes (18-10, 9-6) in front of a season-best home crowd of 1,783 at the Marriot Center on Wednesday night.
“I am really happy for our team,” said BYU head coach Jeff Judkins. “This game meant something to us and our team played really well, with true passion.”
Junior Mindy Bonham led the way for the Cougars, filling up her stat sheet with 12 points, four rebounds and tying her season and career-high with six steals. Junior Haley Hall finished as the BYU leading scorer with 13 points on 5-10 shooting.
“I’m very proud of Mindy tonight,” Judkins said. “She gave a great effort all around and did a good job guarding (Kalee) Whipple.”
The Cougars got the game started fast, nailing two three-point shots after two consecutive steals. They followed the quick six points with another seven before the Utes got on the board at the 13-minute mark.
Utah formed a mini-comeback after BYU's quick start, going on a 7-0 run before the Cougars again took over the game.
Jazmine Foreman led the Cougars on another long scoring run, this time ending at 12-0 and stretching the Cougar lead to 18 points. Foreman was one of three players to finish in double digits with 11 points.
The Utes stopped the BYU run with another 7-0 run of their own but would finish the half with just 14 total points, BYU leading 29-14. The 14 first half points was the lowest score by a Cougar opponent in the first half this season.
Bonham sparked the Cougars back to life to start the second half with a deep three-point basket that began a series of eight straight points for BYU, including a three from Hall and a pair of free-throws by Bonham.
The final 14 minutes of the second half featured the first back-and-forth action of the game, with the two teams exchanging points on consecutive possessions. Utah was never able to put together another run, and never came within single digits after trailing 37-27.
BYU pulled away further as the game came to a close, eventually winning 54-37. The win secures the Deseret First Duel trophy for BYU, and is the first series sweep over Utah for the women since the 2001-2002 season.
The Cougars will again play at home on Saturday against TCU at 2 p.m. A win over the Horned Frogs would secure a second place finish for BYU in the 2010 MWC race.