PROVO, Utah (ABC4 Sports) – BYU was cruising to its sixth straight win and a firm grasp on the all important second seed in the upcoming West Coast Conference Tournament.
Then, the bottom dropped out.
San Francisco outscored the Cougars in the final 7 1/2 minutes of the game, 28-8, and erased a 14-point deficit to beat BYU at the Marriott Center, 77-71.
Frankie Ferrari finished with 23 points, making all five of his 3-point attempts, while Jordan Ratinho hit the go-ahead 3-pointer with 1:20 left to hand BYU a devastating loss.
“The outcome of the game was obviously disappointing,” BYU head coach Dave Rose said. “I thought our guys played hard. I thought for the most part until the last eight minutes that we played pretty smart and that we were dialed in together. But one thing these guys have done is they’ve been resilient all year and we’ll get back in the gym tomorrow and then head up to Spokane and swing away up there against the No. 2 team in the country and see how we do.”
Yoeli Childs led the Cougars with 28 points, while TJ Haws added 25. But the rest of the Cougars combined for just 18 points and committed 14 turnovers.
Gavin Baxter and Zac Seljaas each had 8 points for BYU.
Leading 63-49 with less then eight minutes left, BYU committed five turnovers and went six minutes without a field goal as the Dons outscored the Cougars 17-2 to take the lead for good.
“When you’re up 14 you should be able to defend to win that game,” Haws said. “But give credit to San Francisco. They made big shots. This one will sting for a little bit but we have to move on and we have to have a good practice tomorrow and get prepared for Gonzaga.”
With the loss, BYU (18-11, 10-4 WCC) is technically still in second place in the WCC with two games to go, but they are tied with USF in the loss column and the Dons now own the tiebreaker over the Cougars by virtue of a season sweep.
The Cougars play their final road game of the regular season Saturday at #2 Gonzaga.