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3 keys to BYU basketball’s 91-81 win over Pepperdine

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BYU Cougars guard Richie Saunders (15) goes to the hoop against South Dakota Coyotes forward Tasos Kamateros (34) during the game at Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Dec. 3, 2022.

BYU Cougars guard Richie Saunders (15) goes to the hoop against South Dakota Coyotes forward Tasos Kamateros (34) during the game at Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Dec. 3, 2022.

Spenser Heaps, Deseret News

Coming off a heartbreaking loss to No. 8 Gonzaga Thursday night, BYU (14-7, 4-2) held on to defeat Pepperdine 91-81 at the Marriott Center Saturday night in front of a crowd of 14,434.

Here are three keys from the game:

  • Pepperdine led 2-0 and never had the lead again. However, the Waves cut a 13-point first-half deficit to two a couple of times in the second half, making things a little too close for comfort for the Cougars.
  • BYU was led by Fousseyni Traore (19 points, 9 rebounds), Richie Saunders (13 points), Spencer Johnson (13 points), Dallin Hall (13 points, 7 assists), Jaxson Robinson (12 points) and Atiki Ally Atiki (11 points). 
  • Pepperdine’s Houston Mallette once again victimized the Cougars with 19 points, while Maxwell Lewis added 18. BYU outrebounded the Waves 41-23.