BYU women’s basketball eliminated by Saint Mary’s

Makenzi Pulsipher scored a game-high 16 points, but it wasn’t enough as the Cougars fell to the Gaels 59-49. (Ari Davis)

BYU women’s basketball was defeated by Saint Mary’s 59-49 in the semifinals of the West Coast Conference Tournament on Monday.

Makenzi Pulsipher finished with a game-high 16 points, with Kalani Purcell right behind her with 15.

“I thought Saint Mary’s played really well today,” BYU coach Jeff Judkins said. “They played their physical style of basketball and that was probably the biggest factor of this game. We forced it too much today, and against Saint Mary’s you can’t do that. I’m grateful for the seniors and all they have done for this team, program and university.”

The first five minutes of the game was a repeat for the Cougars, as they fell behind their opponents for the second time this tournament.

Saint Mary’s got its boost in the first half through six points from second chance shots from offensive rebounds, as BYU struggled to defend the paint.

The Gaels dominated the game on both ends in rebounds with 27 boards, compared to the Cougars’ 16.

Pulsipher kept BYU in the running the first half with 10 points and aggressive defense.

BYU caught up in the second quarter after a steal by Pulsipher, who then pushed the ball to Cassie Broadhead for a layup to tie up the game.

After pulling ahead in the second quarter, BYU went into the second half with a seven point lead.

The half started out with the teams trading baskets, but the Gaels slowly gained a lead.

Foul calls on Cassie Broadhead and Amanda Wayment dealt a blow to the Cougars’ offense. Broadhead sat out for the end of the second and third quarters to avoid fouling out, while Wayment got her fifth foul the third quarter.

Once the fourth quarter began, the Gaels pulled ahead with back-to-back threes, and continued to push to a double-digit lead.

The Cougars couldn’t keep up, shooting only 14.3 percent in the fourth quarter.

BYU will likely participate in some sort of postseason play, which will be revealed on Sunday.

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