Jan. 15, 2003
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The Santa Clara University men's basketball team completes its longest road swing of the season when travels to Southern California this weekend for crucial West Coast Conference road games at Pepperdine and Loyola Marymount.
The Broncos (10-4, 1-0 in the WCC) face the preseason league favorite Waves of Pepperdine (9-6, 1-1 in the WCC) Friday at 7 p.m. at Firestone Fieldhouse. The Loyola Marymount (6-11, 0-2 in the WCC) contest is also scheduled for a 7 p.m. tipoff Saturday at Gersten Pavilion. Both games will be broadcast live via the Bronco Radio Network, which consists of 1640 AM KDIA, 103.3 FM KSCU and on the Internet by clicking here.
Santa Clara enters Friday's game having won seven of its last eight games, including a 67-65 win at San Diego in the league opener for both teams last weekend. The Broncos own the best overall record in the WCC and are ranked 21st in the latest mid-major national poll by collegeinsider.com. Santa Clara's RPI is the second-best in the league, according to collegerpi.com, at No. 123.
Freshman Brandon Rohe leads the Broncos in scoring, averaging 13.1 points per game. The San Juan Capistrano, Calif. native is one of the league's top shooters, connecting on 44.9 percent of his three-point attempts and making 85.2 percent of his attempts from the free throw line. He is currently third on the Santa Clara list for most three-pointers for a freshman and is 18 shy of Steve Nash's record for first-year players.
Pepperdine split its two conference opening road games last weekend, rolling over Portland 82-68 and falling at Gonzaga 92-72. During the non-conference portion of the schedule, the Waves won both the Stanford and New Mexico tournaments but went just 2-3 at home. Three starters have missed nearly the entire season due to injuries. Devin Montgomery, who played in the first four games of the season before suffering a broken hand, could return for Friday's game, while Glen McGowan and Will Kimble are out for the year.
Jimmy Miggins leads five Pepperdine scorers in double-figures with a 16.6 points per game average. Terrance Johnson, last year's league freshman of the year, is second with a 13.7 average and is second in the league in three-point field goals per game. Montgomery, Alex Acker and Boomer Brazzle are also scoring in double-figures for Pepperdine, which averages a league-high 80.8 points per game.
Loyola Marymount dropped its two league openers on the road last weekend, losing 85-73 at Gonzaga and 73-68 at Portland. The Lions started the season winning three of their first four games and five of their first eight but have lost four-straight heading into a Friday contest at home against San Diego. LMU are 4-2 in their six home games this season.
The Lions are led by Charles Brown, Andy Osborn and Brandon Worthy. The trio account for 46 percent of the team's scoring and 35 percent of its rebounding. Brown and Worthy are both shooting just over 80 percent from the free throw line. As a team, the Lions perimeter defense leads the league in three-point defense and is second in steals.
Next week Santa Clara plays its first two league games at the Leavey Center with a rare Wednesday game against San Francisco and a Saturday night contest against resurgent Saint Mary's. Both games are scheduled for 7 p.m. tipoffs and tickets are available by calling 408/554-4660 or by clicking here. Saturday's game is part of a doubleheader with the baseball team, which opens its season with a 1 p.m. game against Stanford at Buck Shaw Stadium. Any ticket purchase to either game provides admission to both events.