BYU's Fisher sets 3s record for Maui Invitaional, has island feeling the boom
LAHAINA, Hawaii -- Chase Fischer allowed himself to think about 50 for the briefest of moments. During a magical 10-minute stretch to start the game, anything seemed possible for the BYU guard.
Heck, he was having a better night from downtown than Cougars legend Jimmer Fredette ever had.
Fischer tied the EA Sports Maui Invitational record for 3-pointers with 10 for all of his 30 points as the Cougars rolled host Chaminade 121-85 in the consolation semifinals on Tuesday. Nine of the treys came before halftime, including an unbelievable 8-for-8 start in the first 10 minutes.
The 6-foot-3 junior broke Fredette's BYU 3s record of nine. Fischer finished 10-for-13, adding a single shot from deep in the second half before taking a seat.
"It's awesome. ... In my junior and senior year in high school I watched Jimmer all the time, and never really knew I'd end up at BYU," Fischer said. "It's awesome to break that record for such a good player, but I think I'm more excited from the win and bouncing back from yesterday [a double-overtime loss to San Diego State]."
Fischer was a chessmaster on cuts and curling around screens. He was two steps ahead and he saw all the angles. Check. Swish. Check. Swish.
By halftime, he had 27 points. Checkmate.
He wouldn't have imagined himself in position for such a feat as recently as two years ago, when he was a role player with Wake Forest. Even now, senior Tyler Haws gets the national attention for BYU, but it was Fischer's time to shine.
"Tonight was just guys penetrating, moving the ball, finding each other, and Chase just got loose," BYU coach Dave Rose said. "He's one of those guys that can kind of float around the 3-point line and find space, and then he's got a quick release.
"So it was good today," the understated coach concluded.
Fischer decided to transfer out of Wake after the 2012-13 season and sat out as a redshirt.
"It's been a really long journey," Fischer said. "I had two great years at Wake Forest that I really enjoyed. I just kind of wanted a change of scenery, change of pace. I transferred to BYU and the redshirt year was I think the best thing that could have happened for me in my basketball career. I've matured a lot. I've learned how to really work hard in the college level, and I learned the system at BYU."
Sure, Fisher was used to lighting it up in high school in West Virginia, when he averaged 37 points as a senior. But this was different, even against a Division II team.
To him, the Lahaina Civic Center rims were the same size as the hula hoops used in the halftime show.
Chaminade chased Fischer over, around and through picks, to little effect. Despite that, Chaminade hung around through the early barrage at 40-33.
'Swords guard David Ware could not compare Fischer's blistering start to anything he'd experienced.
"Not in my life or with any team, honestly," Ware said. "He felt confident, I guess. The goal got bigger every time he hit, and he kept hitting. We tried to get to his body and make him drive, but that didn't work."
It wasn't just him Tuesday. Amazingly, BYU connected on its first 12 3-point attempts and finished 17-for-29 from deep, two makes from tying the Maui team record set by Loyola Marymount in 1990. The 121 team points was the fifth-most in Maui history, and also the most since 1990.
Just a year ago, Chaminade guard Christophe Varidel canned 10 3-pointers against Baylor on Maui. With Fischer, it's now shared three ways, with Notre Dame's Kyle McAlarney in 2008.
"We're a record-setting team, either one way or the other," Chaminade coach Eric Bovaird quipped. "Give up records, or sometimes break 'em."