Seniors show out in 65-51 win over Saint Mary's
PROVO, Utah — BYU seniors Brandon Averette, Alex Barcello and Matt Haarms combined for 30 points in a 65-51 win for BYU men's basketball over Saint Mary’s to wrap up the 2020-21 regular season in the Marriott Center.
“I don’t know if we’ve ever had three seniors like this," said BYU head coach Mark Pope, "that all come from different schools and never imagined they would be at BYU. They’ve given their heart, soul, sweat and blood to this school.”
Averette matched Haarms and Gideon George with 11 points each. Barcello scored eight points, grabbed five rebounds and dished out five assists. Haarms had another career night, passing the 1,000-point mark for his career. He picked up a double-double with his 11 points and a season-high 10 rebounds. He had a season-high-tying five blocks in just the first half alone.
Trevin Knell led the Cougars with 15 points. He is 15 for his last 20 3-pointers.
BYU's defense was the story of the first half. Saint Mary’s leading scorer Tommy Kuhse was kept scoreless. The Gaels were 0-for-6 from behind the arc and went 7-for-28 inside. Both teams played evenly to start until the 16-16 mark with 6:19 left. The Cougars then took advantage of an almost six-minute Saint Mary's drought, going on a 7-2 run to finish the half on top, 23-18. BYU still only shot 23.3 percent from the field and 30.8 from the three.
Cougar seniors stepped up the offense in the second half. After going 0-for-11 in the first half, Averette, Barcello and Haarms started the second 4-for-5, accounting for all BYU scoring. Knell continued his hot shooting and tied his career high in points and threes (4) putting the Cougars up 48-32. An and-1 for Haarms would put him over the 1,000 point plateau for his career, and put BYU up 53-36 with 6:51 left. With 51 seconds remaining and a 65-48 lead, Averette, Barcello and Haarms checked out of the game one last time. BYU would conclude on top 65-51.
In the second half the Cougars shot 66.7 percent from the field and 83.3 percent from the three. Saint Mary’s was held to 41.4 percent from the field and 35.7 behind the arc.
After the final buzzer, Pope took the Marriott Center mic and opened the floor for the seniors to speak.
“I’m so grateful,” Averette said. “This has been a crazy year for everyone, but I love this team. Our brothers know we’ve been grinding so we're gonna keep going.”
“You know we’re not done yet,” Haarms said. “We have a long road ahead of us in the NCAA Tournament.”
Barcello then ended the senior speeches with a mic drop: “Don't get us wrong, business is not done yet.”
BYU will begin WCC Conference tournament play March 8 in Las Vegas. Games will be broadcast over ESPN Networks. No fans will be in attendance.