BYU basketball: Cougars rally for key WCC victory at Saint Mary's
One minute later, a Carlino 3-point attempt bounced out to Austin, who tapped the ball high in the air. The ball eventually settled into the net, giving the Cougars their first lead since making the first basket of the game.
“I was trying to keep the ball alive,” Austin explained. “I was actually trying to tip the ball up on the glass so I could go back and get it. Luckily, it went in. It was a big play that finally gave us the lead. It felt good.”
In the waning seconds, BYU’s defense came up big, forcing turnovers by St. Mary’s guard Kerry Carter.
“The first one, I cut (Carter) off at the side and he dribbled it off the ref’s foot,” Austin said. “It was a good play by the ref. The second time, Matt got a hand on it.”
The second Gael turnover gave BYU — nursing a 56-55 advantage — the ball with 7.2 seconds left. St. Mary’s fouled Carlino after he took the inbounds pass. With 33.7 left, Carlino had missed the front end of a one-and-one.
But he sank both free throws to put the Cougars up, 58-55.
With a 3-point lead, Rose had his players foul Stephen Holt rather than risk giving up a potential game-tying 3-pointer. Holt made both shots with four seconds remaining, then St. Mary’s immediately fouled Halford with 3.2 seconds left.
Halford also knocked down both of his attempts from the charity stripe. They were his only two points of the game.
BYU once again fouled Holt with 1.6 seconds left on the clock. Holt intentionally missed the free throw to try to get a 3-point attempt, but the Cougars secured the rebound as the final buzzer sounded.
And there was nothing that Dellavedova could do about it.
BYU hosts league-leading Gonzaga Thursday (9 p.m. MST, ESPN2).
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