Provo • Battling back spasms that threatened to sideline him for Wednesday's pivotal West Coast Conference showdown, Matt Carlino scored 10 points to lead BYU to a 34-27 halftime lead over Saint Mary's at the Marriott Center.
The Cougars shot 53.6 percent from the field and held the visitors to 35.5 percent to lead by as many as 16 points in the first half.
Brandon Davies chipped in eight points and Tyler Haws seven for BYU.
Stephen Holt leads SMC with 10.
The Cougars never trailed, as Josh Sharp hit a 3-pointer to open the game and Saint Mary's came out as cold as the air outside the Marriott Center.
Carlino scored 10 straight points after Sharp's bucket, and when Davies hit a short jumper, the Cougars had a 20-4 advantage.
BYU led 26-11 with about seven minutes remaining in the first half when Davies hit a jumper. However, Holt heated up shortly after that for SMC, and the Gaels went on a 12-4 run to close the big BYU advantage to seven.
The Gaels made seven straight shots after starting the game 4 for 20 from the field.