BYU Falls To Vanderbilt In Semifinals Of Diamond Head Classic

Dec 23, 2021, 10:13 PM | Updated: 10:17 pm
BYU Vanderbilt...
HONOLULU, HI - DECEMBER 23: Scotty Pippen Jr. #2 of the Vanderbilt Commodores glides in for a layup ahead of Caleb Lohner #33 of the BYU Cougars during the 2021 Diamond Head Classic at the Stan Sheriff Center on December 23, 2021 in Honolulu, Hawaii. (Photo by Darryl Oumi/Getty Images)
(Photo by Darryl Oumi/Getty Images)

PROVO, Utah — BYU basketball lost in the Semifinals of the Diamond Head Classic to the Vanderbilt Commodores, 69-67.

The loss drops BYU’s record to 10-3 overall on the season.

BYU’s setback ended with some controversy as guard Alex Barcello appeared to be fouled as he went up for a shot near the paint to try and tie the game. On a night where 38 fouls were called, the officials did not blow a whistle on the play, giving the Commodores the upset win.

BYU didn’t help themselves in the full 40 minutes of play as they turned the ball over 19 times to the Commodores 10. Vandy scored 18 points off of BYU’s miscues.

Vanderbilt guard Scotty Pippen Jr. took over the game and finished with a game-high 23 points on 8-of-16 shooting from the field. Eight of his 23 points came in the final four minutes of the game.

Here’s a snapshot of how the game played out.

BYU/Vanderbilt had a string of runs in the first half

BYU 14, Vanderbilt 11 – 15:17

Vanderbilt jumped out to a quick 8-2 lead before BYU caught fire led by Trevin Knell hitting two threes as part of a 12-0 run.

BYU 21, Vanderbilt 14 – 10:29

Back-to-back layups from Spencer Johnson helped BYU’s lead to a three-possession game.

BYU 23, Vanderbilt 19 – 7:08

Both teams were stepping it up on the defensive end. BYU had not made a field goal in the last 3:52 of action.

Vanderbilt wasn’t much better, making only one of their last eight field goal attempts.

BYU 28, Vanderbilt 25 – 3:43

Vanderbilt had two wide-open three-point opportunities but couldn’t convert.

One guy that has no problem knocking down open deep balls is Alex Barcello. The senior guard buried a three in the corner to keep BYU in front.

When Barcello is given a wide-open look from three, that’s as close to automatic as you will find.

BYU 35, Vanderbilt 30 – HALF

BYU committed 11 turnovers in the first half but still maintained a lead at the break.

For the second night in a row, BYU hit a halftime buzzer-beater. This time it was Spencer Johnson with a layup at the horn.

Scotty Pippen Jr. takes over in the second half

BYU 38, Vanderbilt 38 – 15:58

Vanderbilt regained the lead for a brief moment after a 6-0 run. BYU only hit one field goal, a Te’Jon Lucas jumper in the opening minutes of the second half.

BYU 50, Vanderbilt 50 – 11:45 

Offensive fireworks from both teams and included a three-pointer from BYU’s Caleb Lohner. Coming into the game, Lohner was 1-of-19 from beyond the arc. However, he buried a corner three with confidence. The problem was that BYU was struggling to get defensive stops. Vanderbilt is plus-four on the glass in the first eight minutes of action in the second half.

BYU 57, Vanderbilt 53 – 7:40

With a critical offensive rebound putback for a bucket, Spencer Johnson put BYU up by four. However, Johnson wasn’t the only one crashing the glass as Fousseyni Traore and Seneca Knight were active in helping BYU out rebound the Commodores in these four minutes by five.

Vanderbilt 61, BYU 60 – 3:42

At the 6:01 mark of the half, Alex Barcello was called for his fourth foul. Last night against USF, BYU extended the lead and put it away with their star guard dealing with foul trouble. This time against Vandy, Mark Pope put AB back in nearly two minutes of game action elapsed.

Gideon George buried a three from the top of the arc with the shot-clock expiring, but Vandy’s Scotty Pippen Jr. keeps finding a way to get to the rim and stop the clock with free throws. He has 17 points, with six of his points coming from the charity stripe.

Vanderbilt 69, BYU 64 – 1:21

Pippen Jr. took over the game with four field goals, all of which were at the rim. BYU had costly turnovers from their stars in Barcello and Lohner, which led to the Cougars turnover of 19 for the game.

FINAL: Vanderbilt 69, BYU 67

Next Up

BYU will play Liberty in the 3rd Place Game of the 2021 Diamond Head Classic at 4:30 p.m. on ESPN2 and KSL NewsRadio.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12–3 p.m.) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.

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BYU Falls To Vanderbilt In Semifinals Of Diamond Head Classic