LOS ANGELES (ABC4 Sports) – In what could go down as their most disappointing loss of the season, the BYU basketball team fell to Loyola Marymount, a team that was 1-9 in West Coast Conference play coming into Thursday night.
The Cougars made just 5 of 24 three-point attempts, committed 16 turnovers, and lost to the Lions, 76-69.
The loss snaps a 10-game winning streak against LMU.
“We really struggled to take care of the ball tonight and that is a formula for disaster,” BYU head coach Dave Rose said. “Out on the road, having 16 turnovers is a formula for a very tough night. We got behind and it’s hard to get the game the way you want it.”
Elijah Bryant led the Cougars with 24 points, five assists and three blocks. Yoeli Childs recorded a double-double with 15 points and 13 rebounds.
But the Cougars had no answer for James Batemon, who poured in 28 points to go along with four rebounds and four assists. Freshman Eli Scott added 19 points and 10 rebounds for the Lions.
LMU took an early 4-0 lead before Bryant hit his first 3-pointer of the game. A three-point conversion by Zac Seljaas gave the Cougars their first lead, 8-6.
After a TJ Haws 3-pointer gave BYU an 11-6 advantage, LMU answered with an 16-3 run to take a 22-14 lead.
Payton Dastrup came off the bench and quickly scored his first bucket of the night to slow down the Lions offense with 10:30 remaining in the first half.
A 6-0 run by the Cougars, which included baskets by McKay Cannon and Childs cut the deficit to three points, 25-22.
LMU stayed in control for the remainder of the first half, taking a 42-31 lead into the locker room.
In the first half, the Lions shot 50.0 percent from the field while BYU shot 44.0 percent.
The first bucket of the second half came from Haws as he finished a three-point play, but another run by LMU extended the Lions’ lead to 49-34 with 16:18 to go.
The Lions consistently kept a double-digit lead over the next eight minutes, including a 16-point lead at the 12-minute mark.
Bryant scored the Cougar first trey of the second half to bring BYU within nine, 62-53. After a flagrant foul on LMU, Dalton Nixon converted on one free-throw and Childs’ three-point play brought BYU within reach, 62-57 with 6:11 on the clock.
The Lions made free-throws down the stretch to seal their second win in West Coast Conference play. The Cougars shot 46.3 percent from the field and 20.8 percent from beyond the arc. LMU finished the game shooting 44.1 percent.
The Cougars continue their road trip at Gonzaga on Saturday, Feb. 3. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. mountain time.