PROVO, Utah (Nov. 22, 2008) - A career-high 24 points from Chris Miles and 28 points from Lee Cummard powered the Cougars as they defeated Cal Poly 76-64 in the final game of the 2008 Basketball Travelers Invitational Saturday at the Marriott Center.
"The most important thing we did tonight was figure out a way to win," BYU coach Dave Rose said. "It was a tough game after a tough week and I'm proud of our players. We defended well and rebounded like we needed to."
After a Chris Miles lay-up got the scoring started, the Cougars trailed through the early stages of the game until Cummard hit a five-foot jumper from the right side of the key to put BYU up 20-19 at the 8:27 mark. Seven of Cummard's 11 first-half points came in an 18-8 run through the middle of the first half that helped the Cougars take a ten-point lead at the three-minute mark.
The end of the first half was punctuated when Lamont Morgan, Jr. stole the ball, drove the length of the court and was fouled as he made a lay-up. He hit the foul-shot to convert the three-point-play to and gave the team a 44-28 lead at halftime.
BYU shot 20-of-37 in the first half (54 percent), but was only 1-of-7 from behind the three-point-line (14 percent). The team was a perfect 3-of-3 from the free-throw line. Miles bested his career high by halftime with 18 first-half points.
In the second half, Cal Poly closed the margin to 52-58 at the 9:15 mark on a three-pointer by Charles Anderson, but Cummard added five quick points on a jumper and three-point shot to give the Cougars a 11-point cushion, 63-52, and the Mustangs would not get any closer than six the rest of the game.
Cummard and Miles were the leading scorers in the game. Cal Poly had three players in double figures. Jonathan Tavernari had a game-high ten boards. BYU out-rebounded Cal Poly 44-26.
"Chris Miles was terrific," said Rose. "He had a great game. He gets better and better and will improve as the season goes on."
BYU shot 52 percent (33-63) from the field for the game, compared to 39 percent (23-59) for Cal Poly. The Cougars were nearly perfect from the free-throw line, converting seven-of-eight attempts
The Cougars now begin a three-game road swing as they travel to face Big Sky member Idaho State. The game will tip off Sat. Nov. 29 at 7:00 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on KSL Radio and BYUTV.
2008 Basketball Travelers Invitational Tournament Champion: BYU
2008 Basketball Travelers Invitational All-Tournament Team
MVP - Lee Cummard, BYU Jonathan Tavernari, BYU Chris Miles, BYU Lorenzo Keeler, Cal Poly Cory Fleiger, Rice Rodney Foster, Rice
Postgame Notes and Quotes BYU vs. Cal Poly Nov. 22, 2008
-In the first meeting against the Cal Poly Mustangs, the Cougars won the third and final game of the Basketball Travelers Invitational with a score of 76-64, giving BYU the Tournament Championship. The Cougars finished the invitational 3-0 playing Rice, North Florida and Cal Poly in three nights. -For the fourth game in a row, Coach Rose started the fearsome fivesome of Jimmer Fredette, Jackson Emery, Lee Cummard, Jonathan Tavernari and Chris Miles. To kickoff the Cougars with a 2-0 start, Miles scored the first points on the night for the second game in a row. -The Cougars never trailed a game of the Basketball Travelers Invitational until the last game of the tournament where Cal Poly led for 23 seconds when the score was 2-3 and for a little less than seven minutes in the first half. BYU quickly regained the lead and kept it the rest of the game. -BYU posted its 51st-straight win at home against the Cal Poly Mustangs, the longest active home win streak in the nation. Prior to the current streak, BYU's longest homecourt victory streak was 44 games from Feb. 19, 2000 to Jan. 16, 2003. The last time the Cougars lost at home was the first game of the 2005-06 season to Loyola Maryount on Nov. 18, 2005. -Saturday's win marks the 27th-straight home victory against a non-conference opponent. -The Cougars are off to a 5-0 start on the season for the third season in a row as they beat Cal Poly in game three of the Basketball Travelers Invitational. -Junior Chris Miles had the best night of his career, with 24 points on the night, posting a season- and career-high point total. He led the Cougars in points and in the half with 18. -Lee Cummard chalked up 11 points in the first half and 28 total game points to lead the Cougars in scoring. Saturday's game marked the 52nd double figure game of Cummard's career. -The 44-28 score at the half is the highest-scoring half of the season for the Cougars. -Jimmer Fredette once again played the role of facilitator with five assists, two turnovers and nine points. -Jackson Emery had three assists for the Cougars along with nine points. -The biggest run of the night for the Cougars was an 11-0 run in the first half, with scores from Cummard, Abouo, Miles and Emery. -The Basketball Travelers Invitational All-Tournament Team consisted of three BYU players, Miles, Tavernari and MVP Cummard, along with Rodney Foster and Cory Fleiger of Rice and Lorenzo Keeler of Cal Poly.
POSTGAME QUOTES BYU Head Coach Dave Rose:
"The most important thing we did tonight was figure out a way to win. It was a tough game after a tough week and I'm proud of our players. We defended well and rebounded like we needed to."
"Chris Miles was terrific. He had a great game. He gets better and better and will improve as the season goes on."
"Jonathan did a lot of things well this week. He had some foul problems early tonight, but did a great job on the boards and made big plays that helped us win."
"The most positive thing about this week is that we won four games—that gives us confidence. We're a new team and that many wins gives you confidence in your teammates, confidence in your coaching staff and confidence in everything you need to continue to win."
Cal Poly Head Coach Kevin Bromley:
"We had a couple of miscues and misfortunate plays in the first half, but we battled back. We had the moxie to come back to within six and force a timeout."
"Dave didn't use zone the past two nights, and he had to use a little zone tonight—that was a tremendous compliment to our guys."
"I decided we were going to have to pick our poison. I said we're not giving them wide-open threes. I was proud of how we take away their threes."
"We did a great job on Tavernari, but he had 11 rebounds. That shows the quality of this young man, if one phase of his game isn't working they find another way to contribute to the team."
"They are a really good basketball team. It was a very competitive game."
"Cummard did a great job. He is a poised player and can make shots in the post. He made a difference down the stretch."