UMass found itself up by 10 with 4:44 to play, but missed shots, turnovers and fouls allowed hot-shooting BYU right back into contention, and the Cougars came away with a win in the waning seconds.
With 2:02 remaining, BYU’s Elijah Bryant knocked down a fair of free throws to push the Cougars out in front, 62-61, for the first time since the midway point of the opening frame.
Rashaan Holloway would answer for UMass with a layup to push the Minutemen back ahead. On the ensuing Cougars possession, Payton Dastrup would haul down an offensive rebound in which he put back home, pushing BYU ahead, 64-63.
A C.J. Anderson turnover and foul on the Minutemen’s next trip down court led to a pair of free throw makes by Jahshire Hardnett and a 66-63 score.
UMass would not cave, however, as a Holloway 3-point play tied the score at 66-66 with 13 seconds remaining.
With four seconds to go, out of a UMass timeout, Yoeli Childs took a feed from Hardnett and slammed it home to give BYU a 68-66 advantage, and that’s where it would stand.
Down 9-0 to begin this one, the Minutemen answered with a 12-4 run to pull within one, 13-12. They would take their first lead at the 10:45 mark of the first half of a Malik Hines free throw. UMass would take a 38-28 advantage into the break, only to be outscored 40-28 in the second half.
UMass missed five shots, committed three fouls and had three turnovers in the final four minutes of regulation. Anderson accounted for all the fouls, two of the turnovers and one of the misses.
Halloway led UMass with 16 points and eight boards.
The Minutemen play Quinnipiac (1-4) on Wednesday at 7 p.m.