Cougar comeback falls short vs. Long Beach State
LONG BEACH, California – Despite tying the game after trailing by 12 points in the second half, BYU fell 66-65 to Long Beach State early Tuesday morning at the Walter Pyramid. The game started at 10:45 p.m. PST and was played as part of the ESPN Tip-Off Marathon.
Corbin Kaufusi led BYU (1-1) with 17 points, 10 rebounds and three blocks for his first career double-double. Kyle Collinsworth had 12 points, 13 rebounds and six assists and Jamal Aytes added eight points and three rebounds in his first career game as a Cougar.
Davis opened the scoring for BYU with a layup from the right block to help the Cougars start the game on a 10-2 run. The Cougars' next score was an alley-oop from Collinsworth to Kaufusi followed by back-to-back 3-pointers from Davis and Jake Toolson.
Collinsworth picked up his second foul at the 14:06 mark and headed to the bench as Long Beach State (2-0) responded with an 8-0 run to tie the game at 10 with 13:42 left in the first half.
Long Beach State established an eight-point lead before Kaufusi had a basket at the 9:19 mark, making the score 18-12 and breaking an eight minute BYU scoring drought.
Long Beach State followed with a 6-0 run to extend their lead to 24-12 before Chatman hit a 3-point basket at the 7:44 mark for the Cougars, making the score 24-15 and cutting the 49er lead to nine.
With 38.9 seconds remaining before the break, Kaufusi had the Cougars’ final score of the half with a 3-point play after being fouled on a hook shot inside the lane making the score 36-30 in favor of Long Beach State.
Davis had eight points and five rebounds for BYU at halftime. The Cougars were plagued by turnovers, turning the ball over 14 times.
Long Beach State opened the second half on a 5-2 run before Toolson knocked down a 3-pointer at the 15:46 mark with Long Beach State still leading 41-35.
The 49ers went on an 8-2 run to take a 48-37 lead before Collinsworth made a layup at the 12:12 mark to cut Long Beach State’s lead to nine with the Cougars trailing 48-39.
At the 11:38 mark, Aytes drove down the lane to score his first career basket as a Cougar and BYU went on an 8-4 run to pull within four points. At the 8:35 mark Collinsworth hit two free throws and Aytes had baskets on two-straight possessions to keep BYU within six, trailing 57-51. After an impressive block by Kaufusi on the defense, Chatman had a breakaway layup to make the score 57-53 with 6:37 remaining in the game.
With both teams in the bonus, Kaufusi hit a pair of free throws at the 5:17 mark to make it a one-possession game with the Cougars trailing 59-57. Collinsworth tied the game at 59 on a baseline drive and reverse layup, giving him 10 points on the night and his first double-double of the season with 4:51 remaining.
With 39 seconds left in the game, Collinsworth was fouled on a drive to the hoop and made a free throw to make the score 66-65 in favor of the 49ers.
BYU kept the 49ers from scoring on the next possession but were unable to control the rebound and were forced to foul with three seconds left on the clock.
Long Beach missed both free throws and BYU got the ball back following a lane violation. The inbound from under the BYU basket was nearly picked off and BYU retained possession with one second left.
On the ensuing inbound, the ball was tipped away by a Long Beach State defender and the 49ers held on to win 66-65.
The Cougars return to the Marriott Center to host Adams State on Friday 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.
BYU finishes up its three-game home stand on Saturday, February 4, when the Cougars host Pacific at the Marriott Center…