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BYU Basketball overcomes slow start to beat UVU 82-60

Jaren Wilkey - BYU Photo

BYU Basketball overcame a very sloppy opening ten minutes to beat Utah Valley 82-60 Saturday at the Marriott Center.

BYU will want to forget the first ten minutes of Saturday’s game, as the Cougars scored just ten points while UVU broke into an early lead. UVU went on a 9-0 run and led the Cougars 18-8. Trey Woodbury led the Wolverines with 15 points in the half, and went 3-3 from three to lead the Wolverines. Many fans likely had their thoughts turn to that horrific day in 2016 when UVU dropped 114 in a stunning win at the Marriott Center over the Cougars.

Alex Barcello then took over, leading the Cougars on a 30-6 run to end the half with a 38-24 lead. Barcello scored 14 in the half and BYU warmed up from three, scoring all six of their first half threes during the run. BYU went 6-15 from three in the first half.

Woodbury opened the second half with a three, which Harding followed with a three of his own. BYU extended their lead with another three by Harding, going up 46-30. BYU would extend their lead to 22 at 68-46. UVU would cut the lead to 10 at 68-58 on an 12-0 run. A Barcello jumper finally ended the run, and BYU would extend their lead late, with Rich Harward scoring the last two points on free throws to give the Cougars the 22-point win. UVU went without a field goal the final 5:33 of the game.

Woodbury finished the game with a game-high 24 points while Jamison Overton had 21 for the Wolverines. Barcello led the Cougars for the third straight game, scoring 20 points in the evening. Barcello was 5-6 from three, and has put made himself the clear leader of this team. BYU kept UVU’s Fardaws Aimaq to just 3 points after he scored 24 points and had 18 rebounds against Adams State on Thursday. BYU finished with five players in double figures, with Trevin Knell and Matt Haarms scoring 10 points each and Brandon Averette and Connor Harding added 11 each.

BYU shot 44 percent from three on 11-25, and has shot over 50 percent from the field in all three of their games so far. Free throw percentage improved for the Cougars as well, knocking down 11-14 from the line. BYU had 30 bench points in the game to UVU’s 9. BYU is now 5-1 all-time against the Wolverines.

BYU fans got their first look at transfer Haarms, who came on and got two quick fouls in the half. Haarms had a better second half and finished his BYU debut with 10 points. Caleb Lohner started for the first time in his career in the spot previously owned by Gavin Baxter. Baxter left the game early on Thursday, and tonight Coach Mark Pope told Greg Wrubell pre-game that Baxter had torn his ACL and meniscus.

BYU also sported the black uniforms for the first time since 2016, when BYU wore them against USC. BYU also last wore their football blackout uniforms in 2016.

BYU now hits the road to play USC on Tuesday at the Mohegan Sun in Connecticut. The game tip-offs at 2:30 P.M. EST on ESPN2.