Provo, UT –
BYU was coming off a heartbreaking loss against Gonzaga on Thursday night. However, Pepperdine had lost 19 consecutive true road games going into Saturday’s match-up against the Cougars.
A lot of people wondered how this young BYU team would respond after that loss. Well this young BYU (14-7, WCC 4-2) team responded as they defeated Pepperdine (7-12, WCC 0-5) 91-81 on Saturday night at the Marriott Center.
BYU never trailed after it took a 4 to 2 lead. The Cougars scored 90 points for the fourth time this season as Richie Saunders, Fousseyni Traroe, Spencer Johnson, Dallin Hall, Jaxson Robinson, and Atiki Ally Atiki all were in double figures.
Traroe was the leading scorer as the Sophomore from Bako Valley had 19 points and a game high nine rebounds.
Although Traroe had the most dominating offensive performance on the night. It was BYU’s Richie Saunders who had the most efficiency.
The Freshman from Riverton, Utah scored 13 points on 5-of-6 shooting (83%) in 18 minutes of play while coming off the bench. His biggest shots on the night came in the second half hitting back-to-back 3-pointers, which helped the Cougars go on a 11 to 3 run.
Pepperdine guard Houston Mallette wasn’t going away without putting up a fight as he helped the Waves cut the Cougars lead to three, four times in the second half.
Mallette was doing it all for the Waves as the 6 foot 5 Sophomore finished the contest with a game-high tie 19 points on 6-of-13 shooting from the field, 3-of-7 from 3-point range, and 4-of-5 from the free throw line, to go along with two rebounds and one assist.
With Saturday’s win the Cougars improved to 14-7 on the season and 4-2 in West Coast Conference play. Head Coach Mark Pope is now 24-6 following a loss.
BYU will travel back to California for their two biggest road match-ups of the conference. The Cougars take on Santa Clara Thursday January 19th and San Francisco Saturday January 21st. Thursday’s contest is scheduled for 8pm PST. while Saturday’s contest is scheduled for 5pm PST. Both games can be watched live on CBS Sports Network.
If you love our content, please support our sponsors. We can’t produce our show and articles without our sponsors. They are also an official sponsor of the BYU football team. This article is brought to you by Bucked Up, buckedup.com. Use the “Criddle20” coupon code for 20% off your order.