MORAGA, Calif. (ABC4 Sports) – Yoeli Childs and TJ Haws were hot, but the rest of the BYU basketball team was not.
The Cougars shot just 40.7 percent from the field in an 88-66 loss to Saint Mary’s to fall to 9-8 overall and 1-1 in league play.
“I think that they played well but we had a lot to do with it,” BYU head coach Dave Rose said. “The way that we played in this game needs to be turned around. We need to find a real core to our group that we can rely on every game and then build from there.”
Childs had a double-double with 21 points and grabbing 12 rebounds, while TJ Haws poured in 20 points. But Nick Emery was the only other Cougar in double figures with a season-high 13 points.
The rest of the team was a combined 4 for 19 from the field.
Saint Mary’s jumped ahead 4-0 before TJ Haws scored six consecutive points to give BYU a 6-4 advantage four minutes into the game.
The Gaels’ took back the lead but 3-pointers by Nick Emery and Connor Harding helped the Cougars even the game at 18-all with 9:34 on the clock.
Despite BYU tying the game on multiple occasions, Saint Mary’s managed to not give up the lead after the Cougars led 15-14 at the 11:30 mark. Three-straight buckets from beyond the arc gave the Gaels a seven-point lead, 34-27, and forced a BYU timeout.
In the final three minutes of the first half, Saint Mary’s went on an 8-0 run but Haws answered with a deep trey at the buzzer to keep it a 10-point game going into the locker room, 42-32.
In the first half, the Cougars shot 40 percent from the field compared to the Gaels’ 47.4 percent. Haws led all scorers with 13 points while Emery contributed eight.
Saint Mary’s kicked off the second half with another trey as the two teams managed to score on both ends of the court and with 15:39 remaining in the game, the Gaels held an 11-point lead, 51-40. Childs scored the first eight points for BYU in the second half.
Near the 13-minute mark, Saint Mary’s took a 16-point lead but once again, Haws answered with a long 3-pointer to bring the score to 59-46.
Childs put together seven-consecutive points, including converting on a three-point play, but the Gaels continued to keep a double-digit lead.
Saint Mary’s went on a 17-5 run to increase its lead to 80-56 with three minutes left in the game and ultimately secure the win.
On the game, the Cougars shot 40.7 percent from the field, 35.3 percent from 3 and 72.7 percent from the free throw line. The Gaels recorded 54.8 percent from the field, 42.9 percent from beyond the arc and 73.3 percent from the charity stripe.
The Cougars return to the Marriott Center after five games on the road on Thursday, Jan. 10 against WCC foe Portland.