Davies, Haws lead Cougars to win over Toreros

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Coach Dave Rose picked up career win No. 200 with a 74-57 victory over the University of San Diego Toreros Saturday night.

The team was led by sophomore guard Tyler Haws, who finished with 25 points in a team-high 34-minute effort, and senior forward Brandon Davies, who had 17 points on 58 percent shooting.


The most important stat for Davies Saturday night? After failing to secure a single rebound against Saint Mary's, Davies finished the game with seven rebounds, on par with his average for the season.

Davies spoke after the game about the importance of his play affecting the outcome of the contest.

"You can't beat good teams with me getting zero rebounds," he said. "I took a lot of blame for that loss."

Davies has played a key role for the team this season. When Davies plays well, the team plays well. When Davies struggles, as he has this season with an ankle injury or with foul trouble, the team struggles.

"He (Davies) wants to be a leader on this team," Rose said after the game. "The nights when things don't go his way, I really believe he's a guy who takes that to heart and responds to it."

Davies, Haws lead Cougars to win over Toreros

Davies has his opportunities to make a difference. He is second on the team in minutes per game, behind Haws, and has shot 54.6 percent on an average of 12 shots per game.

"There are a couple guys on this team that are carrying a huge load, because we need them to play well for us to be good," Rose said. "I was pleased with how Brandon responded."

Davies' most impressive play of the night may have come on a possession where he never touched the ball.

Davies picked up his fourth foul of the game with 11:55 remaining, and promptly took a seat on the bench to watch his teammates protect a 14-point lead. His name was called with seven minutes remaining, but with four fouls, had to play with caution to avoid fouling out for what could have been the second game in a row.

With four minutes remaining, San Diego forward Ken Rancifer drove into the lane, straight at Davies in an attempt to draw contact and earn a trip to the free-throw line while sending Davies to the bench. Davies slid over to contest the shot, set his feet, and drew the charge on the shot attempt.

The offensive foul gave the Cougars the ball back, and Rancifer was sent to the bench with his fifth foul while Davies went to the bench with a 15-point lead for his team.

Those type of plays, which can help influence the momentum of a game, will be of utmost importance to BYU as it prepares for a three-game road trip against West Coast Conference opponents. The Cougars play four of their next five on the road and will need their senior captain to play his best basketball of the season to come home unbeaten.

BYU plays Gonzaga next Thursday in Spokane. Gonzaga will be fresh off its own loss, as the Zags were beaten on a buzzer beating shot by Butler on Saturday night. Gonzaga was ranked eighth in the country, with a 17-1 record prior to its loss against Butler.

BYU will play Gonzaga on Thursday at 9 P.M. MST. The game can be viewed on ESPN2, or heard through KSL Radio.

Daniel Lewis is an intern with KSL.com and covers the BYU men's basketball team. He is currently a student at Brigham Young University, studying communications. He can be reached on Twitter at @trueDanLewis.

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