KANSAS CITY — Starting center Aly Khalifa wasn’t able to play in the second half of BYU’s 81-67 loss to Texas Tech on Thursday in a Big 12 tournament quarterfinal game, but it had nothing to do with the fact that the devout Muslim was fasting in observance of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.

Khalifa rolled his ankle in the first half and was able to play for only eight minutes, 24 seconds in that period. With BYU trailing 42-23 at halftime, Khalifa did not play in the second half.

“Everything hurts,” Khalifa said in a somber BYU locker room. “I sprained it and it started hurting and swelling. I talked to the trainers and told them it was really hurting, and I didn’t want to hurt the team, so I stayed out.”

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Khalifa was one of the stars of BYU’s 87-73 win over UCF on Wednesday, when he was also fasting during daylight hours, but just didn’t have it Thursday, like almost all of the Cougars. He missed the first two 3-pointers he attempted and finished with three points and two rebounds.

Thursday morning, he repeated the same routine as Wednesday, arising at 4:30 a.m. for breakfast — delivered to his hotel room by team managers — and attempting to go back to sleep for a bit before the 11:30 a.m. local time tipoff.

The meal included yogurt and a lot of fruit, he said, calling Thursday “more tiring” than Wednesday because the physical game against UCF took a lot out of him.

“My body is tired. I was obviously hungry and thirsty still. I (fasted) yesterday, and that helped. I tried to keep the same mindset as yesterday,” he said “We didn’t come out as strong, and then I rolled my ankle, and I couldn’t take any medicine, obviously, because my ankle was hurt. It was just a combination of everything.”

Coach Mark Pope said BYU will continue to support Khalifa this month in any way it can; Ramadan will go through April 9.

“He had an ankle (injury) that flared up so he wasn’t available the second half,” Pope said.