The Cougars (17-10) looked to keep their March Madness dreams alive against WCC rival St. Mary's (19-7). The Gaels retired Matthew Dellavedovas number before the game. Tyler Haws led all Cougars with 18 points as Nate Austin helped rally the Cougars in the second half for a 60-57 win.
Before the game the Gaels retired the number of former player Matthew Dellavedova, who is remembered most by Cougar fans for that game winning shot last year in the Marriott Center beating the Cougars 70-69. This filled the Gaels with emotion and sparked the team to suffocate the Cougars on offense, and only allowed 25 points. Eric Mika started the first two minutes of the game picking up two fouls then found himself on the bench quickly. The problems didn't end there, Nate Austin also picked up two fouls in the first as well putting a lot of pressure on Luke Worthington and Josh Sharp.
The Cougars had a pretty big scare in the first half as Kyle Collinsworth jumped up for a rebound and landed on his knee. Collinsworth instantly was in pain as his leg was twisted behind him. He limped off the court with the help of the trainer. Amazingly he returned before the half and helped BYU stay in the game as they went to the locker room only down 10.
The Cougars came out firing against the Gaels in the second half, led by a good showing from Collinsworth and Haws. The Gaels were held under 40 percent from the field as Waldow was finally contained by BYU. Tyler Haws helped rally the Cougars who were once down 14 points, to take the lead with 3:25 in the second half 55-53. The first lead they had since the beginning of the game at 2-0.
The Gaels didn't give up as they kept fighting to stay in the game, and tied up the game 55-55 with a minute left. Nate Austin gave the team the lead by one with less than a minute left. Matt Carlino also found himself at the free throw line with 30 seconds left where he missed the free throw giving the Gaels one last chance before turning it over to BYU with 7.2 seconds left. Carlino and Skyler Halford each hit two free throws in the final seconds in order to win the game.
Tyler Haws led the team in scoring with 18 points with Kyle Collinsworth scoring 14. The hero of the game goes to Nate Austin who played impressive and smart defense against Brad Waldow who has given the Cougars trouble over the past two games.
The Cougars will come home for a 9 pm tip-off in Provo against the league leading Gonzaga Bulldogs.