Cowboys Suffer First Loss at BYU

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Under coach Eddie Sutton, Oklahoma State has become renowned for defense. They still didn't have anyone who could stop Brigham Young's Rafael Araujo.

Araujo scored a career-high 32 points, including six free throws in the final 1:01 to lead BYU to a 76-71 win over No. 25 Oklahoma State on Saturday.

"I wanted to finish strong. I really wanted the ball," Araujo said.

Araujo, a 6-foot-11, 280-pound center from Brazil, was 10-of-15 from the field and tied his career high with 17 rebounds for the Cougars (4-1), who had a 44-18 advantage on the boards.

"He went after everything," BYU coach Steve Cleveland said. "Oklahoma State is one of the best defensive teams and usually nothing comes easy against them."

But Araujo, who has scored 87 points in the last three games, made it look easy no matter who the Cowboys threw at him.

"At times they tried to double me, even triple me, but I had the strength to finish," said Araujo, who scored 26 points in the second half.

Mark Bigelow scored 16 points and Mike Hall added 10 for the Cougars in a game played 45 miles north of the BYU campus in the Delta Center.

"We take pride in our defense but tonight it wasn't very good inside. We just couldn't stop Araujo," Sutton said.

The Cowboys (4-1) last led at 68-66 on a fast-break layup by John Lucas with 3:51 to play. Oklahoma State didn't score again until the final seconds -- after the outcome had been decided.

"We played really good defense, especially when we got a lift from the crowd at the end and stepped up the pressure," Bigelow said.

Daniel Bobik, a transfer from BYU, scored 18 points and had eight assists while Tony Allen scored 15 for the Cowboys, who shot 52 percent but had just one offensive rebound.

"I thought our rebounding was horrendous," Sutton said. In 44 years of coaching, I don't think I have seen a team outrebounded like that. If you shoot 52 percent from the floor, you should win."

Araujo missed four consecutive free throws in the second half, but he and Bigelow combined to make 10 straight foul shots down the stretch to hold off the Cowboys.

Oklahoma State led 43-38 early in the second half when the Cougars began going to Araujo, who scored 10 points, including two dunks, in a 14-5 run that lifted the Cougars to a 52-48 lead.

"My teammates were getting me the ball inside and I was making my shots," Araujo said. "Turning left, turning right and making hook shots, I was doing my job."

Despite the crowd advantage, an unusual play hurt the Cougars in the first half.

Garner Meads went to the line for two free throws. When he missed his first attempt, the Cowboys rebounded and Bobik made a 3-pointer on the other end before the officials realized the error.

Meads was given another free throw, but the basket was allowed to stand, much to the dismay of the partisan BYU crowd.



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