by Mike Miller
The best performance for BYU this week was men’s basketball traveling to Portland and dismantling #12 Oregon 81-49 on Tuesday night. The Cougars were led by Alex Barcello, who scored 25 points. After finishing just outside the AP Top 25 at the start of this week, BYU is expecting a big bump when the next polls come out. They will also be buoyed by their 66-60 home win over former Mountain West rival San Diego State on Friday.
Next Up: The Cougars return home to host Central Methodist at 7:00 p.m. MST on Saturday.
The Cougars continued a strong start to the season with an 80-64 win over Fresno State in Provo Saturday. While not nationally ranked yet, BYU has a strong veteran presence and the ability to put together a magical season.
Next Up: BYU beat Arizona State 55-44 at the Marriott Center at the time of this article. On Saturday, the homestand continues with a game against Boise State at 2:00 p.m. MST. Both games are on BYUtv.
Men’s Cross Country
The men cruised to another regional championship and automatic qualification to the national championship. BYU was led by defending national champion Conner Mantz, who finished the 10K race in first with a time of 29:39.6. He was joined in the top 10 by fellow Cougars Casey Clinger (3rd), Brandon Garnica (8th), and Aidan Troutner (9th).
Next Up: The national championship this Saturday at 9:10 a.m MST in Tallahassee, Florida. The meet will be broadcast on ESPNU. Mantz is hoping to repeat with another individual title, and the Cougars are well-positioned to earn their second ever national championship (their first was in 2019). Northern Arizona won last year, but BYU is hoping to be faster this year as they dethroned their southern neighbors at the regional meet.
Women’s Cross Country
The defending national champions finished third in the regional meet, needing an at-large selection to qualify for nationals. Their performance was affected by the absence of star Whittni Orton, although she is expected to return for nationals. In Orton’s place, the Cougars were led by Anna Camp and Aubrey Frentheway, who finished one tenth of a second apart in sixth and seventh place respectively.
Next Up: The national championship is this Saturday at the same course as the men’s meet. Also on ESPNU, the women will start at 8:20 a.m. MST.
After a much-needed bye week to recover, the Cougars remained at #14 in the playoff committee’s rankings.
Next Up: BYU heads to warmer settings with a game at Georgia Southern this Saturday at 2:00 p.m. MST. The game will be broadcast on ESPN+.
The Cougars took care of business at home in the first round of the NCAA tournament with a 6-0 thrashing of New Mexico. While the game started close with a 1-0 halftime scoreline, BYU exploded in the second half to add five second half goals.
Next Up: BYU faces Alabama in the second round of the tournament in Charlottesville, Virginia. The game is Thursday at 2:00 p.m. MST and will be broadcast on ESPN+. If the Cougars win, they will play the winner of Virginia and Milwaukee on Saturday at 5:00 p.m. MST.
The dream season for women’s volleyball marched on with two more home wins this week. A sweep of Pepperdine last Thursday, followed by a 3-1 set win over LMU on senior night last Saturday, moved the Cougars to 25-1 on the season.
Next Up: Two more road games remain for BYU, with the first coming on Thursday at 8:00 p.m. MST at Pacific. On Saturday, the Cougars visit Saint Mary’s at 2:00 p.m. MST.
Featured image courtesy Craig Mitchelldyer, Associated Press