Seniors show out in 65-51 win over Saint Mary's
PROVO, Utah — BYU seniors Brandon Averette, Alex Barcello and Matt Haarms combined for 30 points in a 65-51 win for BYU men's basketball over Saint Mary’s to wrap up the 2020-21 regular season in the Marriott Center.
“I don’t know if we’ve ever had three seniors like this," said BYU head coach Mark Pope, "that all come from different schools and never imagined they would be at BYU. They’ve given their heart, soul, sweat and blood to this school.”
Averette matched Haarms and Gideon George with 11 points each. Barcello scored eight points, grabbed five rebounds and dished out five assists. Haarms had another career night, passing the 1,000-point mark for his career. He picked up a double-double with his 11 points and a season-high 10 rebounds. He had a season-high-tying five blocks in just the first half alone.
Trevin Knell led the Cougars with 15 points. He is 15 for his last 20 3-pointers.
BYU's defense was the story of the first half. Saint Mary’s leading scorer Tommy Kuhse was kept scoreless. The Gaels were 0-for-6 from behind the arc and went 7-for-28 inside. Both teams played evenly to start until the 16-16 mark with 6:19 left. The Cougars then took advantage of an almost six-minute Saint Mary's drought, going on a 7-2 run to finish the half on top, 23-18. BYU still only shot 23.3 percent from the field and 30.8 from the three.
Cougar seniors stepped up the offense in the second half. After going 0-for-11 in the first half, Averette, Barcello and Haarms started the second 4-for-5, accounting for all BYU scoring. Knell continued his hot shooting and tied his career high in points and threes (4) putting the Cougars up 48-32. An and-1 for Haarms would put him over the 1,000 point plateau for his career, and put BYU up 53-36 with 6:51 left. With 51 seconds remaining and a 65-48 lead, Averette, Barcello and Haarms checked out of the game one last time. BYU would conclude on top 65-51.
In the second half the Cougars shot 66.7 percent from the field and 83.3 percent from the three. Saint Mary’s was held to 41.4 percent from the field and 35.7 behind the arc.
After the final buzzer, Pope took the Marriott Center mic and opened the floor for the seniors to speak.
“I’m so grateful,” Averette said. “This has been a crazy year for everyone, but I love this team. Our brothers know we’ve been grinding so we're gonna keep going.”
“You know we’re not done yet,” Haarms said. “We have a long road ahead of us in the NCAA Tournament.”
Barcello then ended the senior speeches with a mic drop: “Don't get us wrong, business is not done yet.”
BYU will begin WCC Conference tournament play March 8 in Las Vegas. Games will be broadcast over ESPN Networks. No fans will be in attendance.
BYU to face Saint Mary's Saturday at home
PROVO, Utah – BYU men’s basketball will face Saint Mary’s (13-7, 4-5) to wrap up the regular season schedule Saturday at the Marriott Center. The Cougars are coming off of three straight wins. The Gaels have won two in a row after dropping a pair of games.
The game will be broadcast on ESPNU at 8 p.m. MST. It will also be broadcast live on the BYU Sports Network on BYU Radio – Sirius XM 143/89.1 FM HD2 and KSL 102.7 FM/1160 AM.
BYU Notes (18-5, 9-3 West Coast Conference)
- The Cougars are 18-5, most recently defeating USF 79-73.
- BYU is No. 2 in the WCC standings, with an .796 adjusted winning percentage.
- BYU has wins over LMU, Portland (twice), Pacific (twice), Pepperdine, San Francisco (twice), Saint Mary’s, Weber State, Texas Southern, No. 18 San Diego State, Utah, Utah State, St. John’s, Utah Valley, New Orleans and Westminster. The four losses were to USC, Boise State, No. 1 Gonzaga (twice) and Pepperdine.
- BYU is led by senior guard Alex Barcello who is averaging 16.0 points, 4.6 assists and 4.4 rebounds per game. He’s coming off a career-high 29 points where he was 7-for-7 beyond the arc, a BYU record for most 3-pointers in a game without a miss.
- Brandon Averette and Matt Haarms, BYU’s other two senior leaders along with Barcello, are the next behind Barcello in scoring with 11.4 and 11.0 points per game respectively.
- Haarms is coming off a season-high five blocks against LMU.
- Freshman Caleb Lohner has led the team in rebounding almost all season, averaging 6.8 boards per game. Lohner had a breakout game offensively against Pacific last week, racking up a career-high 19 points on 6-of-8 shooting, including 5-of-6 from beyond the arc. He followed that up with an 18-point performance against LMU, continuing to shoot lights-out from the field. He was named the WCC Freshman of the Week.
- BYU is one of only 11 Div. I teams currently in the KenPom top 30 in both offensive and defensive efficiency.
- The Cougars have had six different players lead them in scoring in the last seven games.
- BYU’s bench production has been big this season, outscoring opponents in 20 of 23 games played.
- BYU has never lost back-to-back games in the Mark Pope era and has the third-longest active streak of games played without consecutive losses at 57. The two teams above them are Houston and Gonzaga.
Head Coach – Mark Pope
- Alma Mater: Kentucky, 1996
- Division I Career Record: 119-69 (6th season)
- Record at BYU: 42-13 (2nd season)
St. Mary’s Notes (13-7, 4-5 West Coast Conference)
- Saint Mary’s is 10-11, with its most recent result being a 58-46 win over Pacific.
- Saint Mary’s is No. 3 in the WCC standings, with a .590 adjusted winning percentage.
- The Gaels have wins this season over Pacific, Pepperdine, San Francisco, LMU, Sacramento State, Colorado State, Eastern Washington, San Jose State, UTEP, Texas Southern, Nicholls, South Dakota State and Northern Iowa. Their losses have come to Gonzaga (twice), Pepperdine, BYU, Santa Clara, San Diego State and Memphis.
- Saint Mary’s is averaging the fewest points scored in the WCC at 65.9 per game, but they are allowing only 62.2 points per game.
- The Gaels are led by a trio of players who are averaging double-figure scoring this season — Tommy Kuhse (12.9), Logan Johnson (12.5) and Matthias Tass (11.0).
Head Coach – Randy Bennett
- Alma Mater: UC San Diego, 1986
- Division I Career Record: 453-189 (20th Season)
- Record at Saint Mary’s: 453-189 (20th Season)
- All-Time Series: Tied 16-16
- Last Meeting: BYU won 62-52 in Moraga in early January as the Cougars put on the clamps defensively to close the game. It was the Cougars’ first win at Saint Mary’s since 2014.
- TV: ESPNU
- TV Talent: Roxy Bernstein and Adrian Branch
- Radio: BYU Sports Network, BYU Radio Sirius XM 143/89.1 FM HD2, KSL 102.7 FM/1160 AM
- Streamed Audio: BYURadio.org, BYUCougars.com/LiveRadio and the BYU Radio, BYUCougars and BYU Gameday apps
- Radio Talent: Greg Wrubell (play-by-play), Mark Durrant (analyst)
- Live Stats: BYUcougars.com