Feb. 17, 2010
Final Stats | Photo Gallery | Photo Gallery 2
By Alan Rakowski
Athletic Media Relations
FORT COLLINS, Colo. – Five CSU players scored in double figures, but it wasn’t enough to match sharpshooting BYU, who shot 52 percent from the field and 48 percent from three-point range, and defeated the Rams, 92-70, Wednesday night at Moby Arena.
CSU surrendered its highest point total of the season, 92 (previous high was 91 at BYU on Jan. 16). The loss also snapped a three-game winning streak.
BYU (24-3, 9-2 MWC), who came into the game ranked third in the country in three-point field-goal percentage (.419), connected on 12 three-pointers (compared to CSU’s four), and the Rams never held a lead after the 18:21 mark of the first half.
“They move the ball so well and so quickly, that it is so hard to catch up with the ball,” CSU Head Coach Tim Miles said. “And they share it so well; it’s just hard to keep up. Every guy that catches it can make threes.”
Jimmer Fredette, a junior guard from Glen Falls, N.Y., came into Wednesday’s contest leading the MWC in scoring (20.9 ppg), free-throw percentage (.898) and three-point percentage (.477), and totaled 36 points (12-of-22 from the field, 6-of-10 from behind the arc, 6-of-7 from the line) and six assists for the Cougars. It was his fifth 30-point performance of the season.
“Fredette is a special player,” Miles said. “His numbers are better than the player-of-the-year candidates.”
The Rams (15-10, 6-5 MWC) trailed by just 10 at the break, and a layup by senior forward Travis Busch cut the Cougars’ lead to single digits, 41-32, less than 1 minute into the second half. But a 9-2 run by the Cougars put them up by 17 with 12:14 to play in the game. BYU would eventually push its lead to 24, 81-57, with just over 5 minutes to go in the game, and finished the contest with a 22-point victory.
“I thought we were a little jittery, a little nervous on offense,” Miles said about facing off against a ranked opponent. “The guys were excited; they were excited to play against BYU. We knew we had to come out strong in the second half. In the first half it was the tempo we wanted, we just didn’t make shots.”
Four Rams starters (Travis Franklin, Andy Ogide, Dorian Green and Busch) posted double figures and freshman Greg Smith added 11 points off the bench, but CSU couldn’t stop BYU on defense.
“Defensively, we kind of broke down against him,” Green said about defending Fredette. “He hit shots but their whole team did, too.”
Despite the defeat, the Rams remain focused on their upcoming game at UNLV on Saturday, and look to put another tough loss to BYU behind them.
“They happen to have our number,” Ogide said about BYU. “We’re not going to let this get to us too much. We’re just going to get ready for UNLV.”
The game against UNLV will be played at 4 p.m. MT at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, and will air live on the Mtn.