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New York • Chase Fischer and Kyle Collinsworth will never forget the last shots they took as BYU Cougars, shots that quite possibly could have won Tuesday night's NIT semifinal against Valparaiso, but didn't come close.
Instead, lightly used sophomore David Skara hit a 3-pointer with 17 seconds remaining that lifted the Crusaders to the 72-70 win at Madison Square Garden.
"Obviously, it sucks that we went out on a loss and didn't play our best game, but it doesn't take away from the fact that it's a great group and great university," said Fischer, a transfer from Wake Forest. "I'm just so glad I came here and played for coach [Dave] Rose."
Fischer had a chance to win or tie it after Valpo's Shane Hammink missed a free throw with 4.7 seconds left.
"Kyle Davis got the rebound, threw it to me a little before half court," Fischer recalled. "I wasn't completely aware of the time or I probably would have looked back and saw Nick Emery … on my left, open, or taking another dribble and try to get to the basket or get a better look. It happened pretty fast."
Fischer said Hammink, who blocked the shot cleanly, "was pretty long, and I just kind of lost track of time."
Collinsworth, who had 20 points, five assists, five rebounds and five turnovers and five steals, overcame an awful stretch midway through the second half when he committed turnovers on three straight possessions and was temporarily benched by Rose.
He scored seven points in the final five minutes, but put up an airball - his last attempt - with 48 seconds left.
"It's difficult when you catch up and then let it slip away," Collinsworth said. "So, we've done that [comebacks] a lot. We've fallen behind and we've been a very good second-half team. … That's all I can ask for is for us to go out fighting as a team and coaching staff."
Collnsworth, who finished his career with more than 1,700 points, 1,000 rebounds, 700 assists and 200 steals, described the Cougars' postgame locker room as somber and full of disappointment as the Cougars lost in the NIT semifinals for the second time in four years at MSG.
"It's difficult," he said. "The locker room is tough. It's a lot of emotions knowing that was your final college game and you didn't get the win."
It was the eighth 20-point game of the season for Collinsworth, and 17th of his record-breaking career that saw him set an NCAA record with 12 triple-doubles.
Fischer went out scoring in double figures in 25 of his last 26 games and 31 times this season.
"I told them personally how grateful I am for their commitment to BYU and our basketball program and the work that they have put in over the years," Rose said, including Austin's contribution to the program as well.
Twitter: @drewjay BYU seniors' final game
Player Points Rebounds Assists
Kyle Collinsworth 20 5 5
Chase Fischer 16 3 1
Nate Austin 0 0 3