The BYU Cougars and the Saint Mary’s Gaels meet in West Coast conference college basketball action from McKeon Pavilion on Saturday night.
The BYU Cougars will look to build some momentum after snapping a 3-game losing skid with their first road win of the season, coming in the form of a 90-87 win over Pacific last time out. TJ Haws led the Cougars with 24 points on 6 of 12 shooting with 4 threes and an 8 of 11 mark from the foul line along with a team-high 6 assists. Jahshire Hardnett added 17 points and Yoeli Childs chipped in 13 points with a game-high 12 rebounds to lock up the double-double and round out the trio of double-digit scorers for BYU in the win. The double-double is nothing new for Childs, as he is averaging a double-double per game to lead the Cougars with an average of 21.7 points and 10.1 rebounds per game while Haws leads BYU in assists with 5.1 assists per game this season. As a team, BYU is averaging 84.9 points per game on 48% shooting from the field, 31.4% from behind the arc and 73.8% from the foul line this season.
The Saint Mary’s Gaels will look to find some consistency after alternating wins and losses in each of their last 6 games following a 76-72 loss to San Francisco in their last outing. Jordan Ford led the Gaels with 24 points on 9 of 18 shooting with 3 threes while Malik Fitts and Jordan Hunter each had 13 points and a pair of steals, with Fitts matching his 13 points with 13 rebounds for the double-double while Hunter shot 6 of 12 from the floor and added 7 boards. Tanner Krebs added 11 points and 7 rebounds to round out the scoring in double figures for the Gaels in the losing effort. Ford leads the Gaels in scoring with an average of 22.8 points per game while Fitts leads Saint Mary’s in rebounding with 8.2 rebounds per game and Tommy Kuhse leads the Gaels in assists with 3.2 assists per game this season. As a team, Saint Mary’s is averaging 77 points per game on 48.8% shooting from the field, 39% from behind the arc and 74.2% from the foul line this season.
BYU is 0-4 ATS in their last 4 road games and 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games overall while the over is 8-2 in their last 10 conference games. St. Mary’s is 6-1 ATS in their last 7 home games and 4-10 ATS in their last 14 games against a team with a winning record while the under is 35-17-2 in their last 54 conference games. BYU is 1-5 ATS in the last 6 meetings between these two teams and 1-5 ATS in the last 6 meetings between these two teams at Saint Mary’s while the favorite is 9-1 ATS in the last 10 meetings between the two.
You could make a case for BYU here given that the Cougars’ offense always gives them a chance to stay in a game. However, while Saint Mary’s hasn’t been the same dominant Gaels team that we’ve been used to seeing over the years, the Gaels appear to have finally started to turn a corner. Saint Mary’s still has consistency issues to work out but the Gaels could figure them out here against a BYU team that’s had issues covering on the road and has had little success both overall and on the road in this matchup. Add in the fact that the favorite has had a lot of the success between these two teams, and that the last 9 meetings have been decided by double digits, I think laying the points with Saint Mary’s is the way to go here.