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Late run lifts BYU past Pacific

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NCAA Basketball: Pacific at Brigham Young Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports

BYU struggled to pull away from a tough Pacific team for the majority of the game, but a late spurt pushed BYU by the Tigers in a 69-59 victory Saturday night in the Marriott Center.

Yoeli Childs led BYU with 19 points and 13 rebounds, and Connor Harding provided 13 points and 4 rebounds on the bench to pace the Cougars. Nick Emery had 8 points in his second start of the season, but a couple clutch threes and key defensive plays late in the game helped BYU put the game away. TJ Haws added 8 points and 7 assists and Gavin Baxter scored 9 points to round things out.

Stout defense once again carried BYU, as they forced the Tigers into 36% shooting. However, poor free throw shooting from BYU (15-25, 60%) allowed Pacific to stay within striking distance.

After a soft three-game stretch, BYU now goes into the final five games of WCC play in second place and a 1.5-game lead over the third place teams. Each of the remaining games will be tough, beginning with a California road swing this next week at San Diego and LMU.