Three Observations From BYU Basketball’s Home Victory Over San Francisco

Feb 25, 2021, 9:30 PM | Updated: Feb 26, 2021, 12:59 pm
BYU Caleb Lohner Dunk...
BYU Caleb Lohner Dunk (Courtesy of BYU Photo)
(Courtesy of BYU Photo)

PROVO, Utah – The BYU Cougars defeated the San Francisco Dons 79-73 in their first game at the Marriott Center in front of fans this season.

Alex Barcello had a career night for BYU scoring 29 points, a career-high. His previous high was 25 against Westminister earlier this season.

He poured in 21 second half points going 7-for-8 from the field.

The Dons would not go away in large part because of their three point shooting. They made 12-of-36 from deep.

BYU earned another quality win as they continue to bolster their resume for the big dance.

Here are my three observations from a lively night in Provo.

1. BYU fans were back in the Marriott Center

Shout out to all the fans who filled the Marriott Center. The energy was incredible. It felt like there were more fans in the arena than what was reported.

Seeing fans walking up to the Marriott Center was a welcomed sight. There was a line to get inside. Normally, that would bother me. Not tonight.

The BYU band was back in the arena for the first time this season as well. It brought a tear to my eye seeing fans sing the fight song led by the band. It’s incredible how much those things contribute to the college basketball atmosphere.

For the first time in over a year, it felt like a normal college basketball game night  at the Marriott Center.

2. Caleb Lohner poster dunk

What Lohner has been able to do in conference play from a shooting perspective is remarkable.

He started the season 0-13 from behind-the-arc.

Lohner made his first three point basket on the road against Utah State. Since that point, he’s shooting 48 percent from downtown making 18-of-37 during that span.

The freshman went 2 for 4 against San Francisco, but it wasn’t his shooting that got fans on their feet.

Late in the first half Lohner came flying down the lane for a two-handed hammer dunk.

The future is bright for Lohner. It’s amazing how far he’s come in just his first season in Provo.

3. Alex Barcello three point shooting

It’s been a bit of a struggle for Barcello from behind-the-arc in conference play.

Prior to this game, he was shooting 25% from deep making 10 of 39 shots.

Well, it’s safe to say he broke out of his slump against the Dons.

Barcello made all seven of his long distance attempts. They were all needed against the pesky Dons.

That’s a career high, as well as a new BYU school record.

It’s not imperative for him to shoot lights out for this team to win, but it makes them much more dangerous if he does.

This team is rounding into form at just the time. It would be interesting to see BYU play Gonzaga in the WCC championship game, if both teams can get there.

I believe it would be a closer game than what we saw in their first two meetings.

You can hear Matt Baiamonte every Saturday on KSL Newsradio for Cougar Sports Saturday from 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. or you can find him on Twitter here.


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