Cougars edge Portland 83-79 with career nights from Bailey and Maeda
"This was a great comeback - a great team effort," BYU head coach Jeff Judkins said. "Everybody made something happen that allowed us to win, and that's a real positive for our team. Kylie had a great game for us tonight and Morgan played a great second half. She came out focused and did what we needed her to do, despite not playing a good first half. The team stuck together for the win and I thought the last five minutes of the game we executed our game plans and stuck together."
Bailey led the Cougars with a career-high 31 points to go along with a team-high 11 rebounds. Maeda also contributed a career-high in points with 17 to go along with a team-high six assists. Lexi Eaton added double-digit points with 16 to go along with seven boards.
BYU (9-4, 1-1 West Coast Conference) started the game off with a made 3-pointer from Eaton. Portland (2-11, 0-2 WCC) then responded with a pair of buckets to give the Pilots an early 4-3 advantage at the first media timeout.
Both teams struggled offensively early in the first half, but Xojian Harry was able to nail her first trey coming into the game to tie the score back up at 13-all. Neither team then scored during a five-minute span until Bailey hit a layup to level the game back at 15 apiece.
Portland responded to the made Cougar basket with a pair of consecutive 3-pointers from Kari Luttinen and another long jumper to extend its lead to eight at 23-15, forcing a Judkins timeout. A pair of free throws from Maeda cut the lead to just three at 28-25, but the Pilots kept the momentum by hitting a deep 3-pointer at the buzzer to go up 37-28 at halftime.
A 7-2 Portland run began the second half to extend its lead to double digits at 42-30. The two teams traded points from there until a steal and layup from Makenzi Morrison cut the advantage back to single digits at 46-38.
Bailey scored eight-consecutive points to bring BYU within three at 49-46, but the Pilots responded with a made 3-pointer. Portland continued its hot shooting by scoring on six-straight possessions before a three-point play from Bailey cut the Pilot lead to two at 63-61.
The Cougars struggled to overcome the deficit as Portland scored seven points in a row to retake a double-digit lead at 75-65, forcing a BYU timeout. In the waning minutes of the game, Maeda hit a 3-pointer to cut the lead to one and another Bailey bucket gave the Cougars their first lead of the half at 80-79.
A Pilot turnover gave BYU the ball with 24 seconds on the clock. Eaton hit two shots from the charity stripe to give the Cougars an 82-79 edge and a free throw from Morrison sealed the BYU win, 83-79.
The Cougars return to the Marriott Center Thursday to face off against Santa Clara at 12:30 p.m. MST. The game will be broadcast live on BYUtv and BYU Radio. Links to live stats and a video feed can be found on the BYU women's basketball schedule page.
At the break the Cougars had the advantage in the rebound category, 23 to 22. BYU finished the game pulling down 38 compared with 32 for the Pilots. It’s the seventh time this year that BYU has grabbed more rebounds than its opponent.
For the game, BYU was able to tally 13 points off of Portland turnovers.
The Cougars finished with a strong inside presence, getting 40 points in the paint. The Pilots got 32 points.
BYU won the assist category by one, 16 to 15. They also tallied five steals compared with just one for Portland.
Morgan Bailey led the Cougar effort against the Pilots with a game- and career-high 31 points for her 12th game putting up double figures in points.
She finished the game with her fifth double-double of the year with a game-best 11 rebounds.
Kylie Maeda led the BYU effort in the first half with nine points and three assists. She would pick up her third double-digit outing of the year and a new season- and career-high 17 points.
Maeda led BYU in assists category with six.
Lexi Eaton grabbed six rebounds in the first 20 minutes of action and ended the contest with seven.
With 7:23 minutes left in the game, one free throw gave Eaton her 11th game scoring in double figures with 10 and eventually ended the game with 16.
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