Traore's 21 points not enough as No. 21 BYU falls to Oklahoma 82-66

Fousseyni Traore led the Cougars with 21 points as No. 21 BYU was defeated by Oklahoma 82-66 on Tuesday evening.


NORMAN, Okla. — Fousseyni Traore led the Cougars with 21 points as No. 21 BYU was defeated by Oklahoma 82-66 on Tuesday evening at the Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, Okla.

Traore was one of three Cougars in double figures going 9-of-17 from the floor and 3-of-4 from the free throw line. He also five rebounds, two of those on the offensive glass. 

Dallin Hall was a point away from tying a season-high as the sophomore finished with 17 points, tying a career-high with four 3-pointers. He also had five assists with zero turnovers and two steals. Spencer Johnson was the third Cougar to score in double figures with 10 points to go along with four rebounds and four assists. 

BYU shot just 35.9 percent from the floor compared to Oklahoma's 49 percent. The Cougars made just eight 3-pointers, their second lowest makes in a game this season, shooting just 30.8 percent from three. Both teams turned the ball over eight times, but the Sooners' 12 points off turnovers compared to BYU's five helped propel Oklahoma forward.

First Half
Traore quickly made his presence felt for the Cougars, scoring BYU's first four points in the paint and grabbing two rebounds just three minutes into the game.

A pick-and-roll from Hall led to an alley-oop slam by Atiki Ally Atiki, giving the Cougars a 6-4 lead early in the half.

After missing their first three 3-point attempts, Johnson connected on a three on a pass from Hall, tying the score at 9-9 with just over 14 minutes left in the half.

Following a timeout, Jaxson Robinson sank a corner 3-pointer, giving BYU a 12-9 lead with just under 12 minutes left, capping a 6-0 run for the Cougars.

Back-to-back assists from Hall led to two quick baskets by Traore in the paint, giving BYU a 21-18 advantage with 7:33 left in the half.

Hall extended BYU's lead to 26-20 after hitting a 3-pointer from the top of the key. A few possessions later, the sophomore guard made another 3-pointer, making the Cougars' sixth consecutive shot, for a 31-25 lead with just under five minutes left in the half.

Hall hit his third consecutive 3-pointer following a timeout, maintaining the Cougars' 34-29 lead and starting a perfect three for three from the 3-point line.

A scoring drought of more than three minutes for BYU allowed the lead to slip, with both teams tied at 34-34 at the half.

Second Half
The Cougars opened the half with a jumper from Hall and a 3-pointer from Noah Waterman, giving the visitors a 39-34 lead. 

Three consecutive baskets by the Sooners cut their deficit to 42-41 with just under 15 minutes left in the game.

The Sooners took a 46-44 lead with just over 14 minutes in regulation on a 3-pointer. OU extended its lead to 53-46 on another 3-pointer before Traore banked in a floater off the glass, cutting BYU's deficit to five with just under nine minutes left.

After being fouled on a 3-point attempt, Robinson made all three of his free throws before Oklahoma scored again, extending its lead to 60-53 with just under 6:30 remaining. The Cougars continued to hang around with another three, this time a transition triple from Johhson to keep the deificit at seven.

Hall's fourth 3-pointer of the evening brought BYU within 65-59 but the Cougars had no answer on the defensive end as the Sooners led by eight, 67-59, with at the under four minute media timeout.

Traore connected on a pair of free throws out of the timeout following time out to make it a two-possession game. OU responded with a 6-0 run to push the home teams lead to double figures, 73-61. The Sooners made 12 consceutive free throws down the stretch to close out the game. 

The Cougars will return home Saturday evening, Feb. 10, for a matchup with Kansas State at 8 p.m. MT. Watch the game live on ESPN2 or listen to live play-by-play on BYU Radio Sirius XM 143, Radio app or KSL 102.7 FM/1160 AM.