KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The BYU men’s basketball team fell short in the CBE Hall of Fame Classic championship game, losing 75-62 to No. 12 Wichita State on Tuesday at the Sprint Center.
"These are hard games for us to win when we're not shooting the ball well," BYU basketball coach Dave Rose said. "I was really proud of the guys for how they hung in there in a tough situation. Sometimes when you don't score you can see it on the guys faces as far as the effort they give on the defensive end and we didn't really see a lot of that tonight. These guys hung in there and fought and we just came up a few points short."
Matt Carlino finished with a team-high 21 points, six rebounds and two steals, while Tyler Haws added 17 points, going 11 of 11 from the free-throw line, and three rebounds. Nate Austin, who was ejected due to a Flagrant 2 call with 0:45 left in the game, contributed 12 rebounds and two blocks.
Battling through foul trouble, Eric Mika finished with 10 points and Kyle Collinsworth added six points, 11 rebounds, two assists and two steals for the game. Frank Bartley IV scored seven of the bench’s eight points and grabbed three rebounds.
Carlino got off to a good start hitting back-to-back three’s to give BYU a 6-2 lead two minutes into the game. A Mika hook and a Collinsworth drive to the rim extended the lead 12-6 with 15:09 remaining. A Bartley layup from an inbound pass and Carlino’s third 3-pointer capped an 11-0 run at the 12:57 mark to make the score 19-6. The Shockers answered back with an 11-0 run of their own, but was ended by a drive to the basket by Collinsworth to keep BYU up 23-19.
WSU grabbed the 24-23 lead with 6:33 left in the half. With under three minutes remaining, Carlino hit another 3-pointer to cut BYU’s deficit to 32-29. Haws cut the Shockers’ lead to one with two trips to the charity stripe and Bartley’s 3-pointer helped the Cougars take a two-point lead into the half, 36-34.
Carlino finished the half with 18 points, 4 of 6 from beyond the arc, and three rebounds, while Collinsworth contributed two points, six rebounds, two assists and a steal.
The second half went back and forth with Haws making his first field goal of the game at the 18:50 mark and Austin recording a block on the next possession. WSU retook the lead at 47-44, but Haws answered back with a strong move from the baseline to complete the three-point play and tie it at 47 a piece. With 8:34 remaining, Bartley drove to the basket to tie the game, 51-51.
"Field goals in the second half for us were really tough to come by," Rose said. "Give a lot of credit to Wichita State. It's a very good defensive team. We caused them some real issues with our defense, but in the end it came down to a couple plays. (Fred) Van Vleet didn't hit many threes, but the ones he did were big and Baker the same way."
The Cougars went without a field goal for the last 8:34 of the game and had their last 53-52 lead on Haws’ free throws. WSU pulled away late in the game to drop BYU to a 5-2 record.
"You kind of chalk it up to we've got to be better," Rose said. "The same feeling we had last night of being able to execute late and get a big win is how we feel on the other end tonight, deflated, because the game was right there late to win and we were a few plays short."
BYU will play in-state rival Utah State on Saturday at EnergySolutions Arena at 7 p.m. MST. The game will be televised live on BYUtv and broadcast on the Cougar IMG Sports Network on KSL Newsradio 102.7 FM/1160 AM.