PROVO — During the postgame press conference after BYU’s 84-71 victory over St. Mary’s late Saturday night at the Marriott Center, BYU coach Dave Rose brought up junior guard Tyler Haws simply because no one else had — much to his surprise.
“It’s interesting to field six or seven questions and no one’s asked me about Ty getting 33,” Rose said.
Haws had 33 points against the Gaels, including 22 in the second half.
In his last four games, Haws has accumulated 142 points, including a career-high 48 against Portland a little more than a week ago and 38 in last Thursday’s win over Pacific.
Saturday's performance marked the third time in four games that Haws has scored at least 30 points, and the 10th time in his career. If Haws maintains the scoring average he's established the past two seasons, he should surpass Jimmer Fredette as BYU's all-time leading scorer sometime next season.
Haws is currently No. 3 in the nation in scoring, averaging 24.6 points per game.
Could it be that people are taking for granted Haws’ scoring ability?
“That’s amazing that he’s been as good and consistent as he’s been,” Rose said. “I think even you guys (the media) are starting to overlook (that).”
Rose also pointed out that while Haws has scored 142 in his last four games, it’s come in just seven halves, because Haws played less than one minute at Santa Clara due to early foul trouble.
“He’s always been really good for us in closing out games,” Rose said of Haws, whose number was retired at Lone Peak High last Friday night. “He was good again (Saturday). You’ve got to give so much credit to Ty because of the work he puts in, the skill level that he has, and the consistency that he plays with. The rest of our team — you look at Matt (Carlino) and Kyle (Collinsworth), they deliver the ball to him in the right spot at the right time to do what he does.”
Against St. Mary’s, Haws missed his first four shots, but bounced back to hit 10 of his final 13. He also knocked down 11 of 12 free throws.
How does Haws explain his prolific scoring production?
“I just find my rhythm and my teammates do a good job of getting me the ball in places where I can be effective,” Haws said. “As much as I’m happy with the scoring, I feel like we’re figuring some things out defensively and we’re starting to play on that end of the floor, and that’s leading to a lot of our offensive opportunities. If we can continue to do that, this team can continue to get better.”
Collinsworth said that Haws attracts a lot of defensive attention from opponents, freeing up other players for scoring opportunities.
Haws scored the 1,700th point of his career on a 3-pointer Saturday in the second half that put the Cougars ahead of St. Mary’s for good. He is the second-fastest player in school history to reach the 1,700-point plateau, having accomplished the feat in 93 games. Only Danny Ainge reached that milestone faster, at 90 games.
Also on Saturday, Haws eclipsed Mark Bigelow for No. 9 in career scoring at BYU, and tied Brandon Davies for eighth in career free throws made.
The Cougars (15-9, 7-4) are in a second-place tie with San Francisco in the West Coast Conference standings. They have won two straight games after dropping a pair on the road the previous week.
BYU hosts Santa Clara Thursday (9 p.m. MST, ESPNU) and San Francisco Saturday (7 p.m. MST, BYUtv).