BYU falls just short against No. 6 Baylor
PROVO, Utah—Brandon Davies had a big game Saturday, collecting 18 points, 13 rebounds, a block and a steal for Brigham Young. He had a shot at an even bigger performance, but he lost track of one of the smallest players on the court.
Davies' buzzer-beating 3-point attempt was blocked by 5-foot-10 Pierre Jackson, and the Cougars lost 86-83 to No. 6 Baylor.
"I had no idea where he came from," Davies said. "I didn't see him at all. The clock was winding down. Obviously, I could have made the better play but unfortunately we didn't get the shot off."
Perry Jones III scored a career-high 28 points and Brady Heslip hit six 3-pointers for the Bears, who are off to the third 9-0 start in school history and best under coach Scott Drew. Jackson finished with 13 points and seven assists.
BYU led by as many as 13 points in the first half thanks to 9-0 and 10-0 runs. And the Cougars fought back from a 79-70 second-half deficit behind the play of freshman guard Matt Carlino, who scored 18 in his debut for the Cougars (8-3).
Jones limped off the court with 1:26 remaining after knocking knees during a scramble for a loose ball. But he returned and tipped in an offensive rebound to make it 86-83.
"I couldn't let my team down," Jones said. "I didn't want to use my knee as a crutch. I just wanted to go back in and do what I could do to help my team win."
Charles Abouo had 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting for BYU, which absorbed its second nonconference loss in its last 50 home games. Noah Hartsock scored 15.
Carlino, who became eligible Saturday after transferring last year from UCLA, made 7 of 14 shots, including 4 for 8 from 3-point range. He also committed four turnovers, including a costly one down the stretch when he threw a pass into the waiting hands of Heslip to prevent the Cougars from setting up a potential go-ahead basket.
BYU finished with 16 turnovers. Cougars coach Dave Rose credited Baylor with doing a good job of cutting off passing lanes.
"That's a big part of what they do," Rose said. "They play to turn you over. They recruit to turn you over. Their personnel is long. They're athletic. They're quick. They're deep. So they can take a lot of chances."
BYU held a 14-0 edge in rebounds the first 8 1/2 minutes and outscored the Bears 16-8 in the paint in the first half. The Cougars also took advantage of second-chance opportunities.
Baylor kept it close in the first half with its 3-point shooting, and timely plays by Jackson, whose three-point play helped get the Bears within four at halftime. The Bears made 13 of 25 from long range for the game.
"When we're down, we're not going to put our heads down," Heslip said. "We're going to find resolve. We're going to work together to find out what we need to do."
Baylor was outrebounded 44-31 but came up with a few key boards down the stretch.
West Coast Conference Commissioner Jamie Janinovich was in attendance to see the Cougars, the league's newest member. And Utah Jazz general manager Kevin O'Connor was in the arena to check out several Baylor players, including sophomore Jones and freshman Quincy Miller, who were on the preseason Naismith Trophy watch list.
Jones entered the game averaging 15.7 points and 5.3 rebounds. Miller was averaging 12.3 points, 5.6 rebounds and 2.9 blocks a game.
Saturday marked the debut of Baylor sophomore guard Gary Franklin, who transferred in January after playing 13 games with California. He hit two 3-pointers and finished with six points.