BYU men’s basketball: Hardnett proves efficient yet again in win over Loyola Marymount

PROVO — Just about every player on the roster proved efficient for the Cougars during Thursday’s 82-67 win over Loyola Marymount, with JUCO transfer Jahshire Hardnett providing no exception, despite sustaining an apparent leg injury. At the 5:50 mark of the first half, the 6-foot Chipola College product had to be helped off the floor and didn’t appear in the lineup again until the second half.

Despite the injury, Hardnett started off the scoring for the Cougars in the second half, on a lay-up driving hard to the basket. For the game, Hardnett finished with 3-5 shooting from the field for 11 points and four assists, over 32 minutes of play.

Once again, however, it was Hardnett’s defense which received most of the praise from BYU coach Dave Rose after the game.

“He’s a really valuable piece to this team, especially with players like (Loyola Marymount’s), which are really quick,” Rose said. “…He’s really helped our team defensively and tonight he got off to a good start offensively.”

After some struggles early in the year, Hardnett has upped his play during West Coast Conference play, playing particularly effective in team’s first conference win over San Francisco back on January 4.

As for Hardnett’s injury, Rose said it was more of a pain issue after knocking knees with an LMU player, and is hopeful his starting point guard will be available come Saturday’s game versus San Diego.

AROUND THE WCC: The Cougars and Lions weren’t the only two West Coast Conference teams in action on Thursday. All ten conference members saw action, with the marquee matchup coming with Saint Mary’s visiting defending conference champion Gonzaga, and coming away with a come-from-behind 74-71 win to improve its record to 7-0 in WCC play.

A surprising result was in San Diego, where visiting Portland picked up its first conference win …read more

Source:: Deseret News – Sports News

Westminster basketball: men take the sting out of the Yellow Jackets

Westminster men’s basketball defeated Black Hills State (11-6, 8-5 RMAC), improving to 14-2 overall and 10-2 in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.

The first half teetered back and forth as both teams tried to establish control. Westminster held the lead at the end of the first half and didn’t relinquish it to earn the road victory over the Yellow Jackets, 66-58.

The lead changed hands four times in the first half, with neither team being able to pull away from one another. The largest scoring run of the half went to Westminster during a four-minute Black Hills scoring drought. Dayon Goodman and Quincy Bair each scored six points in the final eight minutes of the half to help give the Griffins a six-point lead with 0:26 remaining.

Fraser Malcolm, of Black Hills State, hit a long 3-pointer at the end of the first half, cutting Westminster’s lead to three points, 27-24.

Close to seven minutes into the second half, the Griffins made a nine-point run for a 12 point lead. The Griffins kept a double-digit lead for nearly nine minutes, including their largest lead of the game, 16 points, with 1:45 remaining.

Westminster was 49.0 percent from the field, 30.0 percent from beyond the arc and 72.2 percent from the free-throw line. Black Hills State shot 32.1 percent from the field, 20.6 percent from 3-point range and 88.2 percent from the line.

Goodman had a slow start in the first half, scoring six of his eight points in the final eight minutes. He finished the game with 20 points, leading the Griffins, and 10 rebounds, marking his sixth double-double of the season.

Bair was second on the scoresheet with 12 points, shooting 50.0 percent from the field and perfect from the free-throw line.

The Griffins play at South Dakota Mines and Technology on Saturday at 3 p.m. The …read more

Source:: Deseret News – Sports News

Westminster basketball: women’s basketball stung by Black Hills State

Westminster (8-8, 7-5 RMAC) fell to Black Hills State (15-4, 9-4 RMAC), 58-38. The Griffins only trailed by six points at halftime, but turnovers and shooting 23.1 percent from the field allowed the Yellow Jackets to extend their lead and defeat Westminster.

First quarter turnovers proved costly for the Griffins against Black Hills State. Westminster turned the ball over six times and the Yellow Jackets turned those turnovers into 11 points and a 10-point lead. Siciliee Williams scored two free throws and Haddi Williams scored a layup on a fast break to end the half trailing 15-9.

“We got a little rattled at the start and struggled finding a way to get settled and finding points in the paint,” head coach Shelley Jarrard remarked.

The home side began the second quarter with an 11-2 run and a 15-point lead. The Griffins responded with an 11-point run started by two Williams’s 3-pointers and ending with a Williams layup. The Westminster run ended the half and Westminster trailed 26-22.

At halftime the two teams looked pretty even on the stat sheet. Westminster was 38.1 percent from the field, 4-of-8 from three and 2-of-3 from the free-throw line. The Yellow Jackets shot 32.3 percent from the field, 1-of-7 from beyond the arc and 3-of-7 from the free-throw line.

The ball wouldn’t drop for Westminster in the third and fourth quarters, as Westminster shot 23.1 percent from the field and was outscored, 16 to 32, for a final score of 58-38.

“Haddi was a bright spot and, at one point, we had five freshmen on the court. Black Hills plays great defense and we just weren’t able to counter them tonight,” Jarrard recounted.

Williams posted her first career double-double, scoring 17 points and collecting 10 rebounds. She was perfect from beyond the arc on three attempts and shot 70.0 percent from …read more

Source:: Deseret News – Sports News

Utes stop skid with 70-62 win over Washington

SALT LAKE CITY — Whatever was said and done in practice paid off for the Utah Utes Thursday night in the Huntsman Center. They responded to head coach Larry Krystkowiak’s call earlier in the week to “fix a bunch of things that are broken in the next couple days.”

Utah snapped a four-game losing skid with a 70-62 victory over Washington. The Utes (11-7, 3-4) also put some other negative things to rest. They outrebounded a Pac-12 opponent for the first time this season and put an end to a stretch of subpar defense out on the perimeter.

Krystkowiak acknowledged that the Utes were a little bit frustrated after two lopsided losses in Los Angeles last week.

“I thought we played with an awful lot of energy for the most part,” said Krystkowiak, who added that despite some mistakes (14 turnovers) they did enough to get a win against a quality team.

“It feels good. We finally got a win under our belts,” said Justin Bibbins, who paced the effort with 20 points and 10 rebounds. “So we’re happy about that. We’ve just got to keep it going.”

Bibbins also had five assists (sharing game-high honors with Tyler Rawson) in an all-around effort that drew praise from Krystkowiak.

“I thought he was the spark and the catalyst from three,” Krystkowiak said. “He gave us a great boost, did a nice job — kind of a one-man press breaker for us on the court.”

After holding a lead for a grand total of seven minutes and 15 seconds over their previous four games, the Utes took control early against Washington. They built a 35-24 halftime advantage, holding a lead for more than 18 minutes in the first half.

Other notable numbers at the break included a 22-17 rebounding edge and 1 of 13 shooting by Washington from 3-point range. …read more

Source:: Deseret News – Sports News