Santa Clara, BYU meet in conference play

Santa Clara (10-6, 4-4) vs. Brigham Young (17-5, 8-3)

Marriott Center, Provo, Utah; Thursday, 9 p.m. EST

BOTTOM LINE: Santa Clara pays visit to Brigham Young in a WCC matchup. Each program won this past Saturday. Brigham Young earned an 88-71 win at Loyola Marymount, while Santa Clara got an 86-82 win at home against Pepperdine.

PLENTY OF EXPERIENCE: Senior leadership has been on display for both teams this year. Alex Barcello, Brandon Averette and Matt Haarms have collectively accounted for 47 percent of Brigham Young’s scoring this season and 50 percent of the team’s points over its last five games. For Santa Clara, Josip Vrankic, Christian Carlyle and DJ Mitchell have combined to score 43 percent of the team’s points this season, including 52 percent of all Broncos points over their last five.

IMPROVING IN CONFERENCE: The Cougars have scored 79.5 points per game to conference opponents so far. That’s an improvement from the 76 per game they managed in non-conference play.JUMPING FOR JOSIP: Vrankic has connected on 26.2 percent of the 42 3-pointers he’s attempted and has made 6 of 14 over his last five games. He’s also made 74.2 percent of his foul shots this season.

ASSIST-TO-FG RATIO: The Broncos have recently converted baskets via assists more often than the Cougars. Brigham Young has 47 assists on 85 field goals (55.3 percent) across its past three outings while Santa Clara has assists on 41 of 71 field goals (57.7 percent) during its past three games.

DID YOU KNOW: Santa Clara has attempted the 10th-most free throws in all of Division I. The Broncos have averaged 23.6 free throws per game and 26.4 per game over their last five games.


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