Drollinger’s late-game heroics lead Cougars to 66-64 win over Waves
PROVO, Utah – Brenna Chase Drollinger made four 3-pointers in the fourth period to help BYU women’s basketball defeat Pepperdine 66-64 in the Marriott Center on Thursday.
BYU vs. Pepperdine Final Box Score
“We didn’t play one of our best games tonight, but we found a way to win,” BYU head coach Jeff Judkins said. “Pepperdine did a good job of spreading us out. We tried to be more aggressive but we got too spread out. We did a better job with that in the last five minutes of the game. We needed this win to help give us momentum for the tournament.”
Drollinger finished the game with 17 points, a team-high six assists and a steal. Paisley Johnson shot seven of 14 from the field to lead both teams with 21 points while also grabbing four rebounds. Sara Hamson controlled the paint totaling 10 boards and seven blocks.
Johnson knocked down a 3-pointer for the Cougars’ first basket of the night and Hamson split a pair of free throws as BYU (17-10, 12-5 WCC) took an early 4-1 lead over Pepperdine (14-13, 8-9). Maria Albiero and Johnson each scored a layup to increase the lead to 8-2 midway through the first period.
After the Waves came within two points, Albiero drained a trey to make the score 11-6. Jasmine Moody scored in the paint and Drollinger stole a pass for a fast-break layup to extend the Cougars’ advantage to 15-9. Following a Pepperdine 3, Drollinger beat the shot clock with a 3 to give BYU an 18-12 edge at the end of the quarter.
Albiero added another 3-pointer while Hamson and Babalu Ugwu scored in the post to outscore the Waves 7-2 to open the second period. Pepperdine scored three-straight baskets from behind the arc to answer with a 10-0 run and close the deficit to a single point, 25-24, with 4:56 remaining in the half.
Hamson and Ugwu each added another basket in the paint followed by a Johnson 3-pointer as the Cougars responded with eight-straight points to retake control, 33-24. Ugwu made a free throw to send BYU into halftime with a 34-27 advantage.
Albiero and Johnson both led the Cougars with eight points apiece at the break while Hamson anchored the defense with four blocks. Making five of their first-half six 3-point attempts, the Waves shot 83.3 percent from downtown in the first half.
Following a layup by Moody, Pepperdine remained hot from deep scoring 3s on consecutive possessions. Johnson ended a four-minute scoring drought for BYU with her third trey of the game to make the score 39-35 five minutes into the second half.
Johnson scored a layup and Ugwu putback an offensive rebound as both teams traded baskets. The Waves outscored the Cougars 7-0 in the final 2:10 of the quarter to claim their first lead since the 9:33 mark in the first period, 46-43.
Drollinger caught fire from beyond the 3-point line draining three-straight treys to retake the lead for BYU, 52-47. Pepperdine made another 3 and three free throws to reclaim the advantage, 53-52. Drollinger answered with her fourth 3-point jumper on the quarter to give the Cougars a 55-53 edge at the 5:07 mark.
Johnson scored back-to-back layups to improve BYU’s lead to four points, 59-55. The Waves quickly brought the score within one with another 3-point basket, 61-60. Pepperdine made four free throws to take a 64-63 edge with 1:03 remaining in the game.
After getting fouled on a baseline jumper with 32 seconds left, Johnson made both of her free throws to retake the lead, 65-64. Moody pulled down a defensive rebound and was fouled with two seconds on the clock. The senior split her free throws and the Waves missed a half-court shot at the buzzer as the Cougars clinched the 66-64 victory.
BYU will host Loyola Marymount as the team honors four seniors on Senior Day at the Marriott Center on Saturday, Feb. 29, at 2 p.m. MST. The game will be televised on BYUtv and streamed on byutv.org and the BYUtv App.
Postgame Press Conference - Jeff Judkins
Postgame Press Conference - Paisley Johnson
- The Cougars shot 43.6 percent from the field compared to Pepperdine’s 33.3 percent. BYU also shot 45.5 percent from three-point range and 50 percent from the free-throw line.
- Two Cougars scored in double figures for the ninth time this season, with Paisley Johnson dropping a game-high 21 points and Brenna Chase Drollinger tallying 17.
- BYU dominated down low, scoring 26 points in the paint to the Waves’ 10.
- The Cougars held the advantage in assists, 16-12, and in blocks, 8-2.
- In rebounds, BYU pulled down 39 while Pepperdine had 41.
- The Cougars’ 23 points in the fourth quarter was a season-best.
- Paisley Johnson scored 21 points on seven of 14 shooting to go along with four rebounds, two assists and one steal. The game was her 19th reaching double figures in scoring this season and her fifth scoring at least 20 points.
- Brenna Chase Drollinger recorded 17 points while also adding a team-high six assists, one rebound and one steal. Drollinger hit five 3-pointers for the fourth time this year, going five of 12 from deep on the night. The game was also her 15th scoring in double figures this season.
- Sara Hamson tallied six rebounds, five points, four blocks and an assist during the first 20 minutes of play. She finished the game with a team-high 10 rebounds, seven blocks, five points and one assist.
- Maria Albiero contributed eight points to go along with four assists and three rebounds in the first half. She ended the contest with eight points, five rebounds, four assists and one steal.
- Babalu Ugwu chipped in eight points and pulled down two rebounds.
- Jasmine Moody added seven points and four rebounds.
WCC race ends with two home games for BYU women’s basketball
PROVO, Utah— BYU women’s basketball is 16-10, 11-5 on the year as it plays its final league games at home.
The Cougars host Pepperdine, Thursday, Feb. 27, at 7 p.m., MST. On Saturday, Feb. 29, at 2 p.m. MST, BYU will host LMU. The Cougars' four seniors will be recognized at the conclusion of the game. Fans can watch the action live on BYUtv and on the BYUtv App.
- With a 16-10, 11-5 record, BYU women’s basketball is tied with San Diego for second place in the WCC as teams compete one last week
- BYU averaging 60.5 points and 39.6 rebounds a game; is 16-5 when it gets more blocks than its opponents; is 14-2 when dishing out more assists than opponents; is 14-1 when leading at the half
- The Cougars are nationally ranked 2nd in field goal percentage defense (32.2); 3rd in blocked shots per game (6.7); 4th in blocked shots (174); 14th in scoring defense (54.7); 25th in defensive rebounds (28.7)
- BYU ranks first in the WCC in field goal percentage defense, in rebounding offense and in blocked shots; ranks second in scoring defense and in defensive rebounds; places third in scoring margin, and in 3-point field goals made; ranks fourth in assists; ranks fifth in 3-point field goal percentage defense & in 3-point field goal percentage
- Paisley Johnson leads in scoring for BYU with a 14.8 average; she ranks 31st all-time in career points with 1,016 and is the 15th player to reach the milestone as a junior; Brenna Drollinger is tallying 12 points; ranks 22nd all-time in career points with 1,262; leads in assists and steals with 4.2 and 1.8 averages
- Sara Hamson leads in rebounds and blocks, with 7.8 boards and 4.58 blocks; ranks 1st in the nation in blocked shots (119) and in blocked shots per game (4.58); ranks 3rd all-time at BYU in career blocks with 318
- The Cougars are holding opponents to just 54.7 points and are allowing only 37.5 rebounds a game
- In the all-time series record with the Waves, BYU has a 20-3 mark; when playing in Provo, Pepperdine has never won; in the first matchup between the two conference foes, BYU picked up the 65-47 victory in Malibu on December 30
- Entering the last week of WCC play, Pepperdine has a 14-12, 8-8 record, and is tied with Pacific for fifth place
- The Waves have two players scoring in double figures with a team-best 10.7 points from Hannah Friend; teammate Malia Bambrick contributes 10.2 points a contest; Monique Andriuolo leads the way in rebounds with a 6.9 average and in blocks with a 1.3 average; in the assists and steals category, Barbara Sitanggan tops the list with 4.7 and 2.3 averages, respectively
- Pepperdine is scoring 65.6 points a game and pulls down 38.5 rebounds a game while shooting 37.1 percent from the field and 67.1 percent from the free-throw line
- Head coach Kristen Dowling is in her first year with Pepperdine where she has a 14-12 record
- Loyola Marymount has a 6-22, 3-13 record on the season and will play at San Diego Thursday night before making the trip to Provo for Saturday’s game vs. BYU
- Three players are scoring in double figures for the Lions led by 13.1 points a game from Chelsey Gipson; she’s followed by Ciera Ellington who’s contributing 11.1 points a contest; the final player who puts up double-digit points is Jasmine Jones who’s tallying 10.9 points and a team-best 7.4 rebounds a game
- The team’s assist leader is Ellington who’s dishing out 2.9 assists per contest; Gipson tops the list in steals with a 1.7 average; Meghan Mandel leads the way in blocked shots with a 1.5 average
- In the overall series vs. the Lions, the Cougars lead the way with a 16-2 mark; LMU has never won a game in Provo; in the first matchup of the conference season, BYU recorded a 59-44 win in Los Angeles on Dec. 28
- Charity Elliott is in her sixth season as LMU’s women’s basketball head coach where she has compiled a 98-146 record
After closing out the conference season with back-to-back home league games, BYU prepares to compete in the 2020 WCC Women’s Basketball Championships March 5-10 in Las Vegas at the Orleans Arena. The Cougars enter the tournament as the defending champions.