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BYU vs Utah Basketball final: Cougars fall to the Utes 65-61

In typical BYU fashion, the Cougars keep it close by can't escape sloppy second half play in a loss to the Utes.

Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports

In another close contest with a tough out of conference opponent, BYU came up short once again to the rival Utes 65-61.

After taking a one point lead into the half, the Cougars fell absolutely flat in the second period. A stagnant offense and multiple turnovers let the Utes jump out in front once again. After a relatively slow start, Delon Wright led the way for the Utes with 18 points and 11 rebounds.

After being down 11 points with 6:04 to play, Anson Winder went on a short run, scoring eight consecutive to pull the cougars within three. But after that the Cougars went cold and the Utes iced the game with free throws.

Tyler Haws finished with 23 points and 8 boards for the Cougars, with Kyle Collinsworth chipping in 17 points and five assists.

Utah came into the game ranked #13 after an impressive home win over Wichita State and their only loss coming at the hand of San Diego State.

BYU was forced to shift gears early on when Josh Sharp was inserted for Nate Austin who was injured 20 seconds into the game. After the Ute's first possession Austin come up limping with a hamstring injury and went straight to the locker room.

The Cougars were playing on edge for most of the first half in front of the packed home crowd. Both teams were a combined 0-11 from three 16 minutes into the first half, including four particularly long attempts from Chase Fischer and Anson Winder.

Utah took their largest lead of the game in the first half at the 6:54 mark, going up 11 points on a pair of Delon Wright free throws to make the score 28-17. That's when Kyle Collinsworth decided to take matters into his own hands.

After going 1-2 from the FT line, Kyle threw down a pair of big transition dunks followed by a corner three (the first 3-pointer from either team) to pull the Cougars within three. From there Tyler Haws hit back-to-back threes to give BYU their first lead of the game.

The victory for the Utes was their first in Provo since 2005 and second consecutive against BYU.