PROVO, Utah – Makenzi Morrison scored 15 first-half points en route to a career-high, as BYU beat UNLV 76-61 on “Throwback Thursday” in the Smith Fieldhouse.
"I thought we played a really nice game tonight," BYU head coach Jeff Judkins said. "Our starters came out and gave us a great lift to start the game. We weren't very good for the first five minutes, but we made some adjustments and did a really good job defensively."
Morrison, who finished with a career-high 17 points, wasn't the only Cougar who had a career night. Ashley Garfield recorded her second career double-double, with 10 points and 15 rebounds. Morgan Bailey recorded her 10th double-double with 12 points and 11 boards. Kylie Maeda tallied a career-high eight assists and Lexi Eaton led BYU scorers with 19 points.
BYU (4-3) has now won three of its last four and improved to 16-2 at home against former Mountain West Conference foe UNLV (3-4).
After a four-point deficit through five minutes, BYU scored eight straight to take a 18-14 lead. Garfield scored on two field goals during the run and assisted on another.
BYU extended its lead to nine points with six minutes left in the half, as Morrison scored on consecutive possessions to give her team a 30-21 lead. Minutes later, Morrison completed a three-point play to give the Cougars their first double-digit lead of the game at 35-23.
After hitting two free throws, Maeda rebounded a Rebel shot with under a minute left and threw a pass over the top of the UNLV defense to a streaking Morrison, who finished with a layup to give BYU its 39-25 halftime lead.
Garfield dominated the boards in the first half, especially on the offensive side of the ball. The senior finished the half with eight points and nine rebounds. Morrison led all scorers with 15 first-half points.
The Cougars opened up the second half with a 10-0 run behind six points from Eaton. During the run, Eaton eclipsed 10 points for the fourth game in a row.
Later, an 8-0 run gave the Cougars a 62-33 lead with 10 minutes remaining in the second half. Again, Eaton accounted for six points during the run.
In the remaining time, Judkins took advantage of his team's big lead, clearing the Cougar bench. Fourteen players appeared in the game as BYU coasted to a 76-61 win.
BYU next takes on Colorado State at EnergySolutions Arena in Salt Lake City Saturday at noon MST.
The 76-61 win over UNLV moves BYU to 2-0 against Mountain West Conference opponents this season. The Cougars have two more games against Mountain West teams this season with Colorado State on Saturday and Utah State Dec. 22.
The win on Elaine Michaelis Court was the first game in the Smith Fieldhouse since the 2006-07 season when BYU women’s basketball beat Cal State Northridge 55-48 on Dec. 9. The Cougars are now 51-16 overall in the Smith Fieldhouse.
BYU’s 47 rebounds led to a plus-12 difference in the game, tying the second-highest margin this season. They are 4-0 when outrebounding the opponent.
The win saw four players score in double-figures for the second time this season.
Lexi Eaton reached double-figures for the fifth time this season, leading all scorers with 19 points on 8-of-13 shooting from the field while pulling down six rebounds.
Makenzi Morrison shot 7-of-16 en route to a career-high 17 points, reaching double-digits for the fourth-consecutive game.
Morgan Bailey recorded her second double-double of the season and 10th of her career with 12 points and 11 rebounds on just 5-of-6 shooting while finding her teammates for four assists.
Ashley Garfield notched her second-career double-double and first of the season with 10 points and a season-high 15 rebounds including eight offensive. She had nine boards in the first half.
Kylie Maeda dished out a career-high eight assists of the team-total 19.
PROVO, Utah — With a 3-3 record entering this week’s action, BYU women’s basketball is hosting a pair of games with former Mountain West Conference opponents.
The Cougars host UNLV (3-3) Thursday, Dec. 4 at 7 p.m. MST in a game played at the Smith Fieldhouse. On Saturday, Dec. 6, BYU hosts Colorado State (3-2) in a game that will be played at EnergySolutions Arena in Salt Lake City at noon. Both games air live on BYUtv and are simulcast on BYU Radio.
Game Promotion - UNLV
Throwback Thursday - Game is in the Smith Fieldhouse (SFH)
Free Rally Towels until they run out
Halftime dunk contest
BYU returns three starters and nine letterwinners from last year’s team that compiled a 28-7, 14-4 record. The team finished second in the West Coast Conference and advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament. This year BYU was picked to finish second in the WCC regular-season race.
Morgan Bailey, a 6-foot-2 senior forward leads the team in points and rebounds with 18.7 points and 8.8 rebounds per game. She’s followed by Lexi Eaton, who contributes 15.7 points and pulls down 4.8 boards a contest. Rounding out the double-digit scoring is Makenzi Morrison, who tallies 10.2 points and 2.2 boards per game.
The Cougars are scoring 66.5 points per game while shooting 43.5 percent from the field, 71.8 percent at the free-throw line and 38.2 percent from 3-point land. In all games, BYU has dished out more assists than its opponents.
• Head coach: Jeff Judkins (Utah, ‘78) 14th season
• Team’s leading scorer: #41 M. Bailey, 17.2 ppg
• Team’s leading rebounder: #41 M. Bailey, 8.8 rpg
• Team’s assists leader: #15 K. Maeda, 5.0 apg
• Team’s steals leader: #21 L. Eaton, 1.0 spg
• Team’s blocks leader: #20, Cassie Broadhead, .80 bpg
UNLV has compiled a 3-3 record to date and is coming off a 65-59 loss to South Dakota State. The Rebels have captured wins over LMU, Delaware State and Texas A&M Corpus Christi.
The Rebels return eight letterwinners, including three starters, from last year’s team that compiled a 13-19, 9-9 record and tied for sixth in the MWC. In this year’s league campaign, UNLV was picked to finish sixth.
Two Rebel players are putting up double digits in scoring, led by 21.3 points from 5-foot-8 senior guard Danielle Miller, who also pulls down 2.2 boards per game. Alana Cesarz, a 6-foot-1 senior forward, follows with 16.8 points and 7.0 rebounds per contest. UNLV is averaging 74.7 points a game, shoots 39.4 percent from the field, 63.5 percent from the free-throw line and 29.9 percent from behind the arc.
• Head coach: Kathy Olivier (UNLV, 1982) 7th season
• Team’s leading scorer: #42 D. Miller, 21.3 ppg
• Team’s leading rebounder: #14 A. Rohde, 7.5 rpg
• Team’s assists leader: #33 B. Charles, 3.5 apg
• Team’s steals leader: #42 D. Miller, 3.0 spg
• Team’s blocks leader: #14 A. Rohde and #00 A. Callaway, 1.0 bpg
BYU leads the series 28-12, including a 15-2 mark in Provo. These two former MWC foes played last year in Las Vegas, where the Cougars recorded the 71-64 win on Nov. 12.
Xojian Harry had career highs in points (13) and in 3-pointers (three) in the Cougar win. Jennifer Hamson also had 13 points to go along with four boards. Kim Beeston went 3 for 7 from the 3-point line to get in double-digit points with 10, along with a team-leading six assists. Morgan Bailey got her first double-double of the season with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
BYU and UNLV both finished the game shooting 42 percent from the field, but the Cougars shot 15 more free throws than the Rebels. BYU scored 24 points off UNLV turnovers in the win, compared to just 10 for the Rebels.
The Cougars led by as many as 12 points with 1:05 left in the first half before UNLV cut the leads to just seven, 33-26 at halftime.
UNLV was led by Mia Bell who had a game-high 23 points. Alana Cesarz followed with 13 points, with teammate Danielle Miller tallying 12. Alex Rohde tied for team bests in rebounds with seven.
BYU in the Smith Fieldhouse (SFH)
Overall Record: 50-16
Last Played: 2006-07 season
Game: Dec. 9, 2006 vs. Cal State Northridge
Outcome: BYU won 55-48
Last Loss: Dec. 7, 1996 vs. Montana State, 65-77
Coach Jeff Judkins in SFH: 1-0
Last players to play in SFH: Sr. Melinda (Johnsen) Bendall and Fr. Haley (Hall) Steed
Game: CS Northridge on 12/9/06
Bendall stats: Pts (5), rebs (3), ast (6), stl (2)
(Hall) Steed did not play vs.CS Northridge. She had suffered her first ACL injury in the previous game at New Mexico Sate.
UNLV in the SFH: 1-1
2/1/75: (L) 55-58
2/27/79: (W) 103-94
Entering the week of basketball action Colorado State is 3-2 on the season and is scheduled to play at Drake on Wednesday before battling BYU Saturday.
The Rams have six letterwinners back this year, including four starters that guided the team to a 25-8, 15-3 record finishing first in the MWC. Colorado State played in the first round of the WNIT.
All five of CSU’s starters are scoring in double figures led by 15.5 points from 5-foot-10 senior guard Gritt Ryder. She also grabs 3.8 rebounds a game. Ellen Nystrom, a 6-foot-1 sophomore guard follows with 13.0 points and 3.4 boards, while Elin Gustavsson chips in 11.4 points and is second on the squad in the rebound category, pulling down 6.0 a game. Two players tie for fourth place in scoring for the Rams, with Jamie Patrick and Keyora Wharry each contributing 10.6 points a game. Patrick pulls down 3.2 rebounds while Wharry gets 5.8 boards per contest.
CSU averages 76.8 points per game, shoot 44 percent from the field, 38 percent from behind the arc and 57 percent at the free-throw line.
• Head coach: Ryun Williams (South Dakota, 1992) 3rd season
• Team’s leading scorer: #11 Gritt Ryder, 15.5 ppg
• Team’s leading rebounder: #01 V. Wells, 8.2 rpg
• Team’s assists leader: #01 V. Wells, 4.6 apg
• Team’s steals leader: #01 V. Wells and #13 E. Nystrom, 1.6 spg
• Team’s blocks leader: #22 E. Gustavsson, 1.0 bpg
BYU leads the overall series 53-22. Head coach Jeff Judkins has a 17-5 mark against the Rams. CSU and BYU have not played since the 2010-11 season, when both teams were in the MWC. That year the Cougars swept the series with a 73-57 victory in Provo on Jan. 22 and a 64-55 win in Ft. Collins on Feb. 23.
The Cougar women remain in Utah for their next three games. They host in-state foe Weber Sate on Tuesday, Dec. 9 at 7 p.m. in the Marriott Center and travel to Salt Lake City on Saturday, Dec. 13 for an in-state battle vs. Utah at the Huntsman Center.
BYU then takes a short trip to Logan for a matchup against rival Utah State on Monday, Dec. 22.