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BYU-Marquette: Instant Analysis

Published: Sunday, July 5 2015 9:20 p.m. MDT

Marquette forward Jae Crowder (32) goes to the basket against the defense of BYU's guard Anson Winder (20),  forward Brandon Davies (0) and  guard/forward Brock Zylstra (13) in the first half of their NCAA tournament second-round college basketball game in Louisville, Ky., Thursday, March 15, 2012. (AP Photo/Dave Martin) (Dave Martin, AP) Marquette forward Jae Crowder (32) goes to the basket against the defense of BYU's guard Anson Winder (20), forward Brandon Davies (0) and guard/forward Brock Zylstra (13) in the first half of their NCAA tournament second-round college basketball game in Louisville, Ky., Thursday, March 15, 2012. (AP Photo/Dave Martin) (Dave Martin, AP)

Recap: Marquette knocks BYU out of tournament, 88-68

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The Cougars gave it a valiant effort but simply dug too deep a hole during the first half. Against inferior opponents, such as Iona, BYU could get away with it but not against a team like Marquette.

The Golden Eagles hit the Cougars in the mouth early and then answered every run BYU mounted for the duration. They eventually pulled away to win big 88-68 – advancing to the second round to match up against Murray State.

Cougars get crowded early

The Cougars learned early that although they enjoyed a considerable size advantage down low, for the second game in a row, Marquette poised a much stiffer challenge. Noah Hartsock and Brandon Davies had their early opportunities, but the Golden Eagles proved very physical and aggressive with their defense which gave BYU problems early.

BYU's Brandon Davies (0) sits on the bench and Craig Cusick, far right, were brought out of the game late in the game knowing Marquette will win. BYU vs. Marquette basketball game at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. NCAA Basketball Tournament 2nd round game.     Thursday, March 15, 2012 (Stuart Johnson/Deseret News) (Stuart Johnson, Deseret News) BYU's Brandon Davies (0) sits on the bench and Craig Cusick, far right, were brought out of the game late in the game knowing Marquette will win. BYU vs. Marquette basketball game at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. NCAA Basketball Tournament 2nd round game. Thursday, March 15, 2012 (Stuart Johnson/Deseret News) (Stuart Johnson, Deseret News)

Marquette jumped out early to a 14-4 lead at the 16-minute mark with Big East player of the year Jae Crowder, causing the Cougars’ fits. He hit all three of his field goals during the first four minutes while pulling down seven rebounds.

The 6-6 Crowder looked to be a tough matchup for the Cougars on paper and that bore out. He finished the half with 17 points and 10 rebounds despite spending much of the last five minutes on the bench due to foul trouble.

The Cougars were able to get back into the game, closing the score to 22-14 with Nate Austin providing a boost off the bench. Austin accounted for two blocked shots, a made 20-footer and took a charge in his first two minutes of play.

Shortly after BYU's run, Hartsock picked up his third foul at the 9:24 mark and was forced to the bench.

BYU's Head Coach Dave Rose looks on intently.   BYU vs. Marquette basketball game at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. NCAA Basketball Tournament 2nd round game.     Thursday, March 15, 2012 (Stuart Johnson/Deseret News) (Stuart Johnson, Deseret News) BYU's Head Coach Dave Rose looks on intently. BYU vs. Marquette basketball game at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. NCAA Basketball Tournament 2nd round game. Thursday, March 15, 2012 (Stuart Johnson/Deseret News) (Stuart Johnson, Deseret News)

BYU had ample opportunity to make it just a 10-point margin at the half, but after a Craig Cusick 3-point attempt rimmed out, Marquette took it the length of the court to hit a lay-up at the buzzer – taking a 47-34 lead into the half.

Rebounding and turnovers were the story for much of the first half. After 10 minutes of play Marquette enjoyed an 8-3 edge in offensive rebounds and a 16-5 edge in total rebounds with a 1-7 edge in turnovers.

Answered runs

BYU came out aggressive in the second half, forcing eight Marquette turnovers in the first seven minutes, finding itself down just 60-52. The Golden Eagles answered the Cougar run with nine straight points which gave a framework for how the rest of the game would go.

While BYU was able to sustain runs against a team like Iona, that certainly wasn't the case against a team as talented as Marquette. Every blow BYU would give the Golden Eagles was answered, eventually winning the game going away.

Coach Dave Rose acknowledges Craig Cusick's efforts late in the game as he brings in his starters knowing the game is out of reach. BYU vs. Marquette basketball game at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. NCAA Basketball Tournament 2nd round game.     Thursday, March 15, 2012 (Stuart Johnson/Deseret News) (Stuart Johnson, Deseret News) Coach Dave Rose acknowledges Craig Cusick's efforts late in the game as he brings in his starters knowing the game is out of reach. BYU vs. Marquette basketball game at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. NCAA Basketball Tournament 2nd round game. Thursday, March 15, 2012 (Stuart Johnson/Deseret News) (Stuart Johnson, Deseret News)

Crowder was again huge in the second half – finishing with 21 points, 13 rebounds and three steals on the afternoon. The player who stepped up big for the Golden Eagles was forward Davante Gardner, who finished with 15 points and five rebounds, holding his own against Brandon Davies down low.

Davies and Hartsock both kept BYU in the game for the most part with Craig Cusick providing a huge boost off the bench, but it wasn't enough. The Cougars simply dug themselves too big of a hole to come back against Marquette.

Missed free throws reared its ugly head as well, with BYU – particularly Davies – unable to connect on crucial foul attempts in the second half.

BYU will go into the offseason with a lot of promise toward next year – returning everyone save Hartsock and Charles Abouo, while adding a couple of new pieces. The future looks bright for Coach Dave Rose and his troops.

BYU's Brandon Davies (0) looking dejected sits on the bench as the final seconds tick away with the game out of hand for BYU.  BYU vs. Marquette basketball game at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. NCAA Basketball Tournament 2nd round game.     Thursday, March 15, 2012 (Stuart Johnson/Deseret News) (Stuart Johnson, Deseret News) BYU's Brandon Davies (0) looking dejected sits on the bench as the final seconds tick away with the game out of hand for BYU. BYU vs. Marquette basketball game at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. NCAA Basketball Tournament 2nd round game. Thursday, March 15, 2012 (Stuart Johnson/Deseret News) (Stuart Johnson, Deseret News)

Email: bgurney@desnews.com Twitter: @BrandonCGurney

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