BYU earned itself a split at the Roman Legends Classic, beating St. John’s 74-68 on the second day of back-to-back games in Uncasville, Connecticut, on Wednesday.

The Cougars (4-1) rebounded from a 26-point loss to the Pac-12’s USC in their Legends Classic opener.

Here are three keys from the game: 

  • BYU never trailed in the second half, but the Cougars never led by double-digits until just over two minutes remained in the game. It was a good test for BYU, as it was able to make enough plays — and free throws — down the stretch, even as the Red Storm cut the deficit to as little as four in the final minute. Brandon Averette’s 3 with 2:14 to play put the Cougars up 70-60, and after St. John’s cut the lead to 70-66, Gideon George hit three free throws and Alex Barcello one in the final 40 seconds.
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  • One day after struggling from 3-point range in a blowout loss to USC, the Cougars were better against St. John’s, shooting 10 of 27 (37%). The Red Storm, meanwhile, made just 4 of 21 3-pointers (19%).
  • In a game where St. John’s had the edge in several statistical categories, BYU had a significant edge in bench points (24-14), led by 13 from George and 11 from Trevin Knell. The Cougars also shot 55.6% from the field in the second half — after shooting just 36.3% before halftime — and were led by Barcello’s 20 points (on 8 of 11 shooting), five assists and three rebounds.