BYU men’s basketball: Haws passes Ainge, Cougars beat Santa Clara 78-57

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Tyler Haws takes a jump shot during Saturday's game against Santa Clara. Haws' 21 points put him into second place on BYU's career scoring list.
Tyler Haws takes a jump shot during Saturday’s game against Santa Clara. Haws’ 21 points put him into second place on BYU’s career scoring list. (Elliott Miller)

Tyler Haws moved past Danny Ainge for second on the BYU career scoring list in the Cougars’ 78-57 win over the Santa Clara Broncos Saturday night.

“When you pass a BYU Cougar legend like Danny Ainge, that’s amazing,” said head coach Dave Rose. “It’ll hit him sometime this weekend that that’s quite an accomplishment.”

Haws scored the Cougars’ first four points of the game to surpass Ainge. He finished with 21 and now needs only 114 more points to top Jimmer Fredette as BYU’s all-time scorer ever.

The Cougars knew they would have a tough challenge playing without their all-purpose point guard Kyle Collinsworth. Rebounding was a priority for BYU against the Broncos. Forwards Isaac Neilson and Ryan Andrus stepped up big-time, pulling down nine and eight boards.

“Rebounding has been our whole focus the last couple games, and we’ve struggled,” Andrus said. “Coming in tonight, my whole focus was to rebound, and I made that happen.”

The Broncos came out aggressively in the first half and took a 10-4 lead, despite losing sophomore star Jared Brownridge to foul trouble in the first two minutes.

But BYU gained control by rediscovering its three-point shooting. Various Cougars combined to make five straight triples resulting in a 17-3 run over a 7:52 stretch.

“When shots are falling, everybody wants to get one, and everybody thinks it’s going down,” Skyler Halford said after the game.

BYU led 35-29 at the half.

Isaac Neilson fights for a rebound against Santa Clara. Rebounding was a key to the Cougars' victory against the Broncos.
Isaac Neilson fights for a rebound against Santa Clara. Rebounding was a key to the Cougars’ victory against the Broncos. (Elliott Miller)

The Cougars came out of the locker room still smoking hot from deep, knocking down seven of their first eight 3s over nine minutes to stretch their lead to 20.

“It was nice to see a few 3-pointers go in tonight,” Haws said. “Everyone in that locker room is committed to sharing the ball and shooting the right shots and making the extra pass.”

BYU ended 15-29 from three as a team, after going 6-35 in their last two games.

The Cougars were able to cruise to victory for the first time in five games, holding their lead above 20 points throughout the end of the game and squelching any SCU attempts at a comeback.

The win keeps BYU in a tie with Pepperdine for third place in the West Coast Conference. The Cougars will travel to face the Waves on Thursday, Feb. 5.

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