PROVO – Kyle Collinsworth posted the 11th triple-double of his career and led BYU to a 99-81 victory over Portland Thursday night at the Marriott Center. With the win, the Cougars remain within one game of first place in the West Coast Conference heading into the final game of the regular season on Saturday.
Collinsworth’s triple-double consisted of 14 points, 10 rebounds and 16 assists and extended his NCAA record to 11 triple-doubles of his career. He went into halftime with 10 points, seven rebounds and eight assists.
“Credit to my teammates. They get open, space the floor well and knock down shots,” Collinsworth said. “We played a good pace. We shared the ball. There was a lot of assists tonight. We moved the ball well, and when you do that, the ball comes back to you.”
Chase Fischer had a game-high 21 points and contributed four rebounds to the Cougars’ winning efforts. Nick Emery had 18 points and Zac Seljaas had 10 points and five assists. Corbin Kaufusi had six points and rebounds, Kyle Davis had 11 points and four rebounds and Jordan Chatman also added a career-high 13 points in the win.
“We were lucky to make a few shots and keep the score,” head coach Dave Rose said. “Overall, it was a good win for us, and we’ll look forward to Saturday.”
Portland (12-18, 6-11 WCC) opened the game with a 5-0 run over the first two minutes. A Collinsworth layup with 16:30 left in the first half tied the game at 7-7, and the two teams stayed close for the next three minutes.
Four turnovers over the next two minutes proved to be costly for the Pilots as BYU pulled ahead on Fischer’s 3-pointer from the left side with 12 minutes to play. Emery added his first points of the game on a layup to give the Cougars an 18-13 advantage.
A dunk from Davis extended BYU’s lead to five with 10 minutes to play. Fischer added a layup and a 3-pointer to put the Cougars up by 10 with eight minutes to play, 27-17.
The Cougars went on a 10-0 run for the next three minutes. During their run, Chatman made two 3-pointers to make it 33-17 with 6:25 left in the first half. BYU stayed hot, with Emery and Collinsworth contributing seven points in two minutes to put the Cougars up 41-21.
Portland came within 18 with 3:30 to play, but BYU continued its dominant offensive attack until halftime, going into the locker room up 53-32.
BYU came out flat in the second half, allowing Portland to go on an 8-0 run during the first two minutes. Emery’s layup ended the Pilots’ run and Fischer’s reverse put the Cougars up 59-40 with 17 minutes to play.
Portland countered with an offensive attack, making 5 of 5 from the floor, including three 3-pointers over a two-minute span. Seljaas had back-to-back 3-pointers to take the Cougars to an 82-62 lead with eight minutes to play. Collinsworth’s dunk gave the Cougars an 89-70 advantage and his rebound with 5:38 to play gave him his 10th rebound and the triple-double. Strong offense kept the Cougars’ lead throughout the end of the game.
The win sets up a Saturday showdown with Gonzaga for the Cougars.
“The fact is we were able to take care of business on Thursday,” Rose said. “(Saturday) should be everything we want it to be. You want that game to have a lot of meaning late in the year. And senior night, you’ll have all those emotions you’ll deal with and a nationally-televised game. These are special moments, special times. Hopefully we play well.
BYU will play Gonzaga at home Saturday at 6 p.m. MST for their final game of the regular season. The game will be broadcast on ESPN2 and the Cougar IMG Sports Network.
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