Karina Amos | Posted: 21 Jan 2021 | Updated: 26 Jan 2021

BYU-Portland Postgame Notes and Quotes

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BYU team in the huddle


PROVO, Utah – The following notes are from BYU's 95-67 win over Portland on Thursday, Jan. 21, 2021, at the Marriott Center. 



A Half of Runs

In the opening minutes BYU went up 9-3, then Portland went on a 13-0 run, BYU followed with a solid 14-3 run to take their lead in the first half. 

Hot Shooting

The Cougars shot 57% from the field, racking up 95 points. That is the second-highest point total scored by the Cougars in a game this season after 108 against Westminster to open the season. 

Whole Team Contribution

The BYU bench scored 39 points. Brandon Warr stepped on the court for the first time this season and got two rebounds in three minutes. Jesse Wade checked in for the Cougars for the first time since the USC game Dec. 1. He was in for three minutes and had an assist. 


Matt Haarms

Haarms led all scorers with 23 points, a career-high. He also grabbed six rebounds and had three blocks. Haarms is now tied with three others for second all-time in most field goals made in a game without missing (9-9) by a BYU player. Kresmir Cosic holds the BYU record for most field goals made in a game without a miss, going 12-12 in 1971. 

Alex Barcello 

Barcello had a career-high eight rebounds. He also had 10 points and six assists. Barcello has scored in double figures in 12 of 15 games this season. 

Caleb Lohner 

Lohner dished out a career-high six assists. His previous high was three against Utah Valley in November. 

Notable career highs/career firsts

Career-high points: Haarms (23)
Career-high rebounds: Barcello (8)
Career-high assists: Lohner (6)


Head coach Mark Pope

Thoughts on the game

“I’m super proud of my guys. Boatloads of frustration in the first half, it's almost like they just want to be frustrated. We just can't get enough of it and that's a real gift as a team when it doesn't turn you totally sideways. We had just come from two games where you could just punch the other dude in the mouth and there was going to be no call, to this game where it was just called way different, which is fine, it just took us a while to adjust to it. But I was really pleased with how the guys shared the ball, with 28 assists, and I was really pleased with all the contributions we got from our guys and the guys managing frustration and doing this for each other, so a great night for the Cougars, super happy.”

On the offensive success in the game

"We felt like we had an advantage, especially when Portland got in foul trouble, their big Henn got in foul trouble early. And so we felt like we really had the advantage inside, which we had mixed results with, you know, got a couple offensive fouls. But I thought working inside out was really good for us all night. Their changing defense going back from zone to man, it's kind of the first time they've really shown that consecutively. It had us on our heels for a minute, we tried to feel ourselves out. But the guys responded well to that over the course of the game too. We finally got to a point where they didn't care, where it didn't matter, and that's where you want to be as he doesn't slow you down, you don't really pay attention, you just go play. So I thought we responded to that really well too."

On Matt Haarm's productivity 

"He was doing a nice job physically engaging in the post. He was really patient in the post. Jon McBride told me on the way in here that this was the most consecutive field goals made in a game going all the way back to Kresmir Cosic. So anytime you get to put your name in the same sentence with Kresmir, that's pretty cool. I think our bench nearly fell over in joyous celebration on the last one, the three from the top of the key that bounced high off the rim and then finally caromed in. Matt's a terrific shooter, they just have fallen for a little while, so it was really great to see that one go in. It was a terrific performance by him. He was really good protecting the rim, he was really good management penetration, he was matched up with a much smaller player, a quick, good driver, and he measured really well. As an aside, this team is the number one ranked team in the country in terms of free throws per field goal. They are magical, they're unbelievable at getting to the line and I thought our guys did a tremendous job guarding without fouling."

On ball movement and a season-high 28 assists

"This is just a happy place for our team. It's the way we love to play. We'll go play and win if a team is gonna make us do it the other way and grind it out, we'll do it, but when we get to have ball movement, it's really fun for us. The zone just invites ball movement and so the more comfortable we got playing against the zone, I thought the better we executed but yes, 28 is a really happy number for us."

Guard Alex Barcello

On Matt Haarm's performance

"It was unbelievable. He works so hard every day. We all kind of kind of said in the locker room after the game, he didn't play the last couple minutes this week on the road of either game and just how great of a teammate he is on the bench, how much energy he brings when he's in the game, how he talks to guys on the floor. It was just unbelievable and I was extremely happy. I know all the other guys were extremely happy to see him do so well tonight. I told him I wanted to tackle him when he hit that three but he was screaming at me to get get back on defense and get in the gap. I was just so happy for him and that's who he is as a player. I'm excited for the season to go on with him and I think that gave him a lot of confidence, which he should have, because he's just such a dominant force inside the paint. And I know the guys were proud of him as well."

On 14 made three-pointers tonight

"It was amazing. It's something we focus on every day, Coach Fueger is great about getting us at least 20 minutes of skill work, you know, catch and shoot, catch and shoot on the move, different types of shots that we'll see in games, whether it's an extra pass to another extra pass or the skip pass or a post passing out to the weak side. He does extremely well at getting us game like shots, and I think it showed tonight in the game."

On Trevin Knell's new role in the starting lineup

"He's done a really good job. I've been extremely impressed how locked in he is on our scout. He's really defended his man well and been on help side in the gap on bottom, really, being vocal out there, which I'm extremely proud of him. And then he has hit shots, so he showed that tonight a couple times. I'm just excited for him as the year goes on, I think it gave us a boost of energy and we have a lot of guys coming off the bench that bring a lot of energy into the game as well like Caleb, Connor, Gideon, you know, I could go down the line, just an unbelievable group of guys and I'm just so happy for us right now."

Center Matt Haarms

On his performance tonight

"I think my guys put me in great positions. After they found out that I was doing a great job down low, I think they started looking for me every single time. In the first half I didn't really establish myself, but then they realized early in the second half that I was doing really well and they really helped me have a good game today."

On knocking down his first three-pointer in a while

"You know, it's been a little bit of a struggle for me from three. I'm really confident shooting the ball. I know that I can hit it, I know that I can make it and that's why I keep shooting them. In practice, they go in, they go in in workouts, they go in in pregame, just in the games, they haven't gone in in a while. So to be able to hit one, everyone kind of knew that I've been kind of struggling on the court in terms of my three ball. So to be able to hit one today felt really good. You know, all the guys know that and they're extremely happy for me, so it's just really awesome to be part of a team like this."