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Wofford fails to stop BYU's Fredette

POSTED March 17, 2011 9:16 p.m.

DENVER (AP) — Stopping The Jimmer? As the poster in the stands said, “Fredette about it.”
Wofford used about every combination of defense imaginable Thursday night, but still got “Jimmered.” Jimmer Fredette, the nation’s leading scorer, dropped in 32 points to lead third-seeded Brigham Young to a 74-66 victory over the Terriers in the NCAA tournament.
Fredette went 10 for 25, made 12 trips to the free-throw line and added seven assists to help the Cougars win their school-record 31st game. Next, they’ll play the winner of a later Southeast region contest between St. John’s and Gonzaga.
The 14th-seeded Terriers (21-13) lost in the first round for the second straight year, but as they did in a four-point loss to Wisconsin in 2010, they gave BYU (31-4) quite a game. BYU played with a six- or eight-point lead for most of the second half and never turned it into the blowout that many of these 3 vs. 14 matchups can be.
But in the end, Wofford wound up like most of BYU’s opponents this season — on the losing end, with nobody to match one of the country’s most tenacious players bucket for bucket.
While Fredette forced his share of shots and only went 2 for 9 from 3-point range, Wofford didn’t live up to its billing, either. The eighth-best 3-point shooting team in the country went 4 for 19 from behind the arc. Outside of post man Noah Dahlman, who went 6 for 10 en route to 22 points, none of the key players in the Wofford lineup came close to making half their shots. Jamar Diggs got his 14 points on 5-for-14 shooting. Cameron Rundles went 1 for 9 from 3 and had 11 points.
Fredette spent most of the night with Diggs in his face and Diggs was helped occasionally by a big man who would pop out and try to trap. But it’s hard to deny this guy his shots. He’d jack ‘em up from 2, 3, 4 feet behind the arc. His favorite play in the second half was driving left to the hoop, then switching to his right hand for a layup.
He did that on two straight possessions to give BYU a 49-41 lead. The teams traded buckets for a bit, then Wofford went on a three-minute dry spell during which BYU extended the lead to 65-51.
Strangely, it wasn’t Fredette, but Charles Abouo who did most of the damage in putting the game away.
Abouo scored eight of his 10 points during that stretch and gave the Cougars something they’ll need if they’re going to go far in the tournament — a compliment to Fredette now that BYU doesn’t have its leading rebounder, Brandon Davies.
Davies, also the team’s third-leading scorer at 11.1 a game, was suspended earlier this month for violating the school’s honor code and BYU hasn’t been quite the same since. Its only real highlight since Davies left came last week when Fredette scored 52 points in a win over New Mexico.
That game helped cement Fredette’s legend in the Rocky Mountains, and with March Madness here, he could become an even bigger star.
On Thursday, there were signs and T-shirts all around the Pepsi Center spreading the word. “Fredette About It.” ‘’I’m going to Jimmerland.” And, of course one that crossed out the words, “Romney/Jimmer 2012,” and replaced them with “Jimmer/Romney 2012.”
Of course, not everbody loves Jimmer.
While BYU was trying to run the clock out on a game that had long been decided, Fredette jacked up a 30-foot air ball and was serenaded by boos — something he grew used to as he traveled the circuit, tearing up the Mountain West Conference during 2010-11.

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