Cougar sharpshooter Haws does biggest damage with 37 points.
PROVO, Utah — Brigham Young’s Tyler Haws gave Washington’s C.J. Wilcox a flashback to their high-school days in Utah — and it wasn’t a good one.
“He’s added some aspects to his game, and it makes him difficult to guard,” said Wilcox after Haws poured in 37 points to end the Huskies’ season with a 90-79 BYU win in the National Invitation Tournament Tuesday night. “He was executing tonight and he was hitting a lot of shots (15 of 24). It’s tough to slow somebody down when they get going early.”
Haws made sure UW’s NIT stay proved much shorter than a season ago, when the Huskies made it to the semifinals in New York.
Wilcox scored 16 of his team-high 20 points in the second half for Washington (18-16), but it was not enough to overcome a hot-shooting BYU team. The Cougars shot 58 percent in the second half and Haws was even hotter — hitting 9 of 12 shots — en route to setting a BYU scoring record for an NIT game.
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“I just kept doing the same things I was doing in the first half,” Haws said. “I felt like I hit a few shots that went in and out in the first half. I just tried to keep playing on the attack and keep my aggression level up. I was able to get some shots to go down.”
Brandon Davies added 22 points and eight rebounds as BYU (22-11) improved to 9-10 all-time against the Huskies, while Matt Carlino chipped in 20 points and nine assists.
Shawn Kemp Jr. had 15 points and 11 rebounds for Washington.
BYU, trailing 35-33 at halftime, came out energized in the second half while the Huskies hit just one of their first seven shots. The Cougars took a 38-37 lead on a three-pointer from Davies and Haws added a runner and a layup to extend the lead to 43-39.
The Huskies rallied briefly, tying it at 45 on a jumper from Kemp, but things went downhill for UW again.
Starting with a Davies jumper, BYU exploded on a 13-2 run to take control of the game. Carlino had a huge hand in fueling the run. He stole an inbounds pass from Andrew Andrews to set up a Brock Zylstra dunk. Then Zylstra stole the ball from Desmond Simmons and set up Carlino for a huge three-pointer.
By the time Nate Austin capped the run with a dunk, BYU had a 58-47 lead with 11:07 remaining.
“We knew they could get out and run, and they were really good at it,” UW coach Lorenzo Romar said.
The Huskies rallied once more, cutting the deficit to 66-63 on Abdul Gaddy’s layup four minutes later. But the Cougars finally slammed the door shut. Carlino buried a deep three-pointer and Davies followed with a layup on the next possession to boost BYU’s lead back to eight at 71-63.
Washington got no closer than six the rest of the way.
“They were able to capitalize off our quick misses,” Romar said. “Being the team that they are, they took advantage of it. I thought Matt Carlino’s 18 points in the second half may have been the difference.”
Washington asserted itself defensively in the first half, limiting BYU to 33 percent shooting and forcing nine Cougars turnovers.
The Huskies used a 12-3 run — including a pair of three-pointers by Andrews — to gain a 30-27 lead with 3:11 left in the half and took the 35-33 edge into the locker room when Wilcox drilled a three-pointer with two seconds showing.
For Washington, the contrasting halves — 33 points allowed in the first half, 57 in the second — served as a perfect metaphor for a confounding season as a whole.
“We could just never get it all together,” Gaddy said. “We would rebound well in one game, and we didn’t guard as well. We’d guard really well in another game, but we didn’t shoot it well.”
Percentages: FG .418, FT .882. Three-point goals: 8-22, .364 (Wilcox 4-8, Andrews 2-4, Suggs 1-4, Gaddy 1-6). Team rebounds: 6. Blocked shots: 5 (Wilcox 2, N’Diaye 2, Kemp, Jr.). Turnovers: 10 (Andrews 4, Simmons 2, Suggs 2, Gaddy 2). Steals: 8 (Suggs 2, Gaddy 2, N’Diaye 2, Simmons, Andrews). Technical fouls: None.
Percentages: FG .470, FT .913. Three-point goals: 7-22, .318 (Carlino 4-8, Davies 1-1, Haws 1-3, Calvert 1-5, Cusick 0-1, Ambrosino 0-2, Zylstra 0-2). Team rebounds: 6. Blocked shots: 5 (Austin 3, Davies 2). Turnovers: 12 (Carlino 5, Haws 2, Davies, Calvert, Cusick, Winder, Zylstra). Steals: 8 (Zylstra 2, Carlino 2, Austin 2, Calvert, Haws). Technical fouls: None.
Attendance: 7,511. Officials: Rick Batsell, Jim Giron, Wilson Holland.