PROVO, Utah (AP) — Logan Johnson had 14 points and freshman Aidan Mahaney scored all 10 of his points, including a fade-away jumper just before the buzzer, in the second half and No. 22 Saint Mary’s (Cal) escaped with a 57-56 victory over short-handed BYU on Saturday night.
Mitchell Saxen had 11 points, 10 rebounds, four assists and two blocks for Saint Mary’s (19-4, 8-0 West Coast Conference). Alex Ducas scored 12 points and Augustas Marciulionis added 10.
The Gaels have won 10 in a row and 13 of their last 14.
Dallin Hall was fouled on a driving lay-up attempt with 10.2 seconds left and made 1-of-2 free throws to give BYU a 56-55 lead but Mahaney took the inbounds pass, probed the defense before he drove the lane, stopped near the right block and pivoted away from the basket before hitting the winning jumper over the out-stretched arm of defender Fousseyni Traore.
“I just wanted to give us a good look, look for the best shot,” Mahaney said. “It went up and it went in and then the rest is history.
“I think I could have played better tonight but for us to grind out a win. … We highlight gritty as a word for our team, and that’s kind of how I would define what happened.”
Spencer Johnson hit two late 3-pointers to cap a 12-2 run that gave BYU a 55-53 lead with 2:21 to play. Logan Johnson answered with a floater in the lane 26 seconds later.
Hall scored a career-high 23 points on 9-of-14 shooting but made just 3 of 6 from the free-throw line for BYU (14-10, 4-5). Traore added 11 points and eight rebounds.
Jaxson Robinson — who had started every game this season — Atiki Ally Atiki and Noah Waterman did not play for BYU. The trio, all of whom have started at least one game for the Cougars, had been suspended for one game for violating team rules.
BYU went more than eight minutes without making a field goal in the first half as the Gaels used a 16-1 run to open a 19-8 lead with 8:33 left before halftime. The Cougars scored 11 consecutive points and 16 of the next 19 before Marciulionis hit three free throws to tie it at 25 at halftime.
Saint Mary’s returns home to play San Francisco on Thursday
BYU plays the second of three consecutive home games Thursday against Loyola Marymount
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