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No. 18 BYU Fades Late On Road At No. 14 Baylor

Jan 9, 2024, 9:28 PM | Updated: 9:39 pm

BYU/Baylor, Game Recap, Jaxson Robinson...

BYU guard Jaxson Robinson against the Baylor Bears on January 9, 2024. (Mitch Harper, KSL Sports)

(Mitch Harper, KSL Sports)

WACO, Texas – No. 18 BYU falls to 0-2 in Big 12 play as they lost at No. 14 Baylor on Tuesday.

The Bears edged out the Cougars 81-72.

BYU committed 14 turnovers to Baylor’s five.

Down the stretch, Jalen Bridges and Ja’Kobe Walter carried Baylor. The two combined for 41 points.

BYU’s leading scorers were Trevin Knell and Spencer Johnson, with 15 each.

Many people will look at the foul discrepancy in the game. BYU was called for 24 fouls compared to Baylor’s 15. The Bears were 21-of-28 from the foul line to BYU’s 11-of-14.

First Half

15:49 – Baylor started the game with a three then Trevin Knell committed a turnover. But the Bears were not able to capitalize on points off that turnover.

BYU settled in with a couple of buckets at the basket, but their cold shooting from the Cincy game has continued in the early going as they are 0-for-3 to open. BYU 6, Baylor 5.

10:42 – Atiki Ally Atiki was called for an offensive foul that was caused by him slipping on the floor. Then one possession later, Richie Saunders had a strong take to the hoop for a bucket.

BYU gave a breather to Dallin Hall; the backup point guard was Jaxson Robinson instead of Trey Stewart. Stewart had four turnovers in four minutes against Cincinnati. Pope has wanted all season to find spots for Robinson to play the point. BYU 15, Baylor 11.

10:42 – During the media timeout, Atiki Ally Atiki was called for a dead ball foul, which resulted in his second personal foul. Then Baylor got the possession. The Bears did not score on that extra possession but they did knock down the two free throws. BYU 15, Baylor 13.

7:07 – Some home cooking is going in favor of Baylor from the officials. BYU built up a 20-13 lead after a Trevin Knell three. Then the whistles started piling up on the Cougars.

Fouls on Trevin Knell, Richie Saunders, and Dallin Hall were called.

Three BYU players had two fouls called on them, compared to Baylor, who had only two foul calls at the under-eight media timeout. Baylor 24, BYU 22.

3:39 – Fousseyni Traore made his first appearance in the game. It was a promising three minutes as both of his field goal attempts went right at 7-footer Yves Missi and they led to points. Traore looked to have more explosion off the court compared to Saturday against Cincinnati, where he didn’t appear his usual self.

Aside from Traore’s bucket in the paint, shooting has gone cold for BYU. The Cougs have knocked down only one of their last eight field goal attempts.

Baylor star Ja’Kobe Walter is the only player to reach double-figures in scoring so far with 10 points. Baylor 30, BYU 26.

HALF – BYU goes into the halftime break with a six-point lead. The Cougars closed the first half strong on both ends of the floor.

Spencer Johnson had back-to-back buckets, first a three, then a tough bucket backing down RayJ Dennis for a midrange jumper.

Aly Khalifa buried a three, then Jaxson Robinson earned an and-one on a last-second layup at the basket.

BYU shot 52% from the field in the first half. Baylor was 35%.

Jaxson Robinson leads BYU in scoring at 10 points.

Second Half

15:58 – BYU built up a nine-point lead after a Trevin Knell three put the Cougars in front 45-36. Then there was a barrage of fouls called.

Aly Khalifa was called for three fouls in less than a minute. Then Atiki Ally Atiki and Trevin Knell were called for fouls.

Baylor reeled off a 5-0 run to counter BYU. BYU 45, Baylor 41.

14:04 – BYU coach Mark Pope has to burn a timeout to stop the bleeding from a Baylor 10-0 run. One of the top sixth men in the Big 12, Langston Love, buried a corner three to put Baylor back in front. Baylor 46, BYU 45.

11:16 – BYU missed some opportunities to pull back in front after back-to-back turnovers from Dallin Hall and Jaxson Robinson on consecutive possessions.

Before the media timeout, Dallin Hall picked up his fourth personal foul.

Staying with the fouls theme, Baylor big man Yves Missi picked up his third foul. In replace of him was Josh Ojianwuna, Fousseyni Traore scored a bucket on the reserve.

Richie Saunders had another strong bucket at the rim with contract and was still able to finish. Baylor 52, BYU 51.

8:19 – Back and forth they go. Spencer Johnson hit back-to-back threes that put BYU in front by three. Then Baylor responded with a pair of buckets from Jalen Bridges and Jayden Nunn to put the Bears in front. Langston Love buried another corner three to give Baylor a two-possession lead. Baylor 61, BYU 57.

2:42 – High-intensity here in Foster Pavilion. After a long break, Baylor brought in Ja’Kobe Walter for the final stretch. He didn’t attempt a field goal in the first 15 minutes of the second half. When he checked in, he looked fresh and went to the rim and earned an and-one.

Down by seven, BYU guard Dallin Hall buried a three to cut it to four. On the next possession, with a chance to cut the deficit some more, Hall tossed up a tough reverse layup attempt that resulted in an airball.

Baylor got out in transition and found Jalen Bridges for a three.

Before the media timeout, Trevin Knell was fouled shooting a three, and landed on the floor awkwardly. He took a while to get up off the floor. Baylor 73, BYU 66.

FINAL – Mark Pope was called for a technical foul when there was a potential-jump ball that ended up resulting in a fifth personal foul for Dallin Hall.

Baylor 81, BYU 72

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for KSLsports.com and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12–3 p.m.) on KSL Newsradio. Follow Mitch’s coverage of BYU in the Big 12 Conference on X and Threads: @Mitch_Harper.

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No. 18 BYU Fades Late On Road At No. 14 Baylor