February 27, 2011

Santa Clara Finishes Strong With Win Over Pepperdine

Game Highlights

By Student Assistant John Nash '13

Behind junior Marc Trasolini's 21 points which helped him to his 1000th career point, Santa Clara downed Pepperdine 71-68 in a crucial WCC matchup on Senior night at the Leavey Center. With the win, the Broncos improve to 18-13 overall and finishes 8-6 in the WCC. Pepperdine falls to 11-20 and 5-9 in the WCC.  Santa Clara sweeps the Waves for the first time since the 1983-84 season - 27 years!
With the win, the Broncos claim the four seed and a first-round bye for next weekend's WCC Tournament in Las Vegas and will play the winner of Loyola Marymount-Portland.  LMU will play Portland Fri., March 4 and Santa Clara will play the winner on Sat., March 5.

Trasolini was honored on the court with his mother Donna as Coach Keating presented him a game ball for scoring his 1000 career point.

(Last couple minutes of the game)
"At the end of the season, teams are going to be scrapping, playing hard and not giving up and Pepperdine did a good job of that tonight," said Bronco head coach Kerry Keating. "Evan Roquemore should be the Freshman of the Year in our conference. I don't know if it was the 1,000 career points or not, but we've been begging Marc to play like he did this weekend for two years. I think he's come to the realization that he doesn't get to play with Ben after this year. Ben does a lot of work to help Marc score. We are really happy for Marc."

Before the game, the Santa Clara seniors were honored with their families at center court.  Michael Santos, Ben Dowdell, Troy Payne and Nate Mensah all started along with Kevin Foster.  NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Montana and his wife Jennifer were in attendance as guest's of Michael Santos' parents (long-time family friends).

Marc Trasolini scored 20+ points for the second game in a row, scoring 21 (10-15 FG) points and grabbing six rebounds. Foster scored 16 points (4 from 9 from three) while dishing out five assists and Evan Roquemore scored 15 points and grabbed six boards. Troy Payne pulled down eight boards in his final home game.

"I feel really good about my play this weekend. I feel really good about it. Coach Keating challenged me and I knew I expected more out of myself and so I worked really hard this week, took care of my body and came out really aggressive," said Trasolini.  "It is really special that I get to share that with my mom and maybe that's why I played so well this weekend. It's an honor to be mentioned with some of those great names in Bronco history."

Lorne Jackson led the Waves with 23 points, four assists and four steals. Mychel Thompson added 11 points and nine rebounds while Joshua Lowery scored 15 points for the Waves.

Foster's 16 points pushed him past John Bryant's 596 points for third on the Santa Clara single-season scoring list.  He needs 17 points to break the school record for points in a season set by Dennis Awtrey (1968-69) when he scored 619.

Santa Clara's streak with 6+ steals is now at 22 straight games- the longest in the nation.

Santa Clara shot 45.3 percent (25 of 55) from the field, including 34.8 percent from beyond the arc (8 of 23). The Broncos collected 33 rebounds, 15 assists, eight steals and five blocks.  They shot 86.7 percent from the free throw line (13 of 15) with 13 turnovers. Pepperdine shot 37.5 percent (21 of 56) from the field, including 34.8 percent from beyond the arc (8 of 23). The Waves collected 36 rebounds, nine assists, 11 steals and three blocks.  They shot 76.7 percent from the free throw line (23 of 30) with 11 turnovers.

The two teams swapped free throws to open the game.  After Thompson converted a three, Dowdell banked in a jumper. Pepperdine would put together a mini 6-0 run, capped by Joshua Lowery's mid range jumper at 16:27.
Roquemore ended the run with a three in the corner, but Taylor's Darby's free throws pushed the Waves lead to six.  Foster nailed a three, and after a Darby free throw he converted two of three at the line to make the score 16-14 Pepperdine.
After the teams traded baskets, Trasolini went coast-to-coast and finished with a dunk to tie the game at 18 with 12:01 remaining.  The teams remained scoreless for the next 4:40 until Ben Dowdell converted on the inside to give Santa Clara its first lead of the game.
After Darby converted a layup, Roquemore hit his second three of the evening.  The two teams swapped free throws, and John McArthur found Raymond Cowels III for three to make the score 28-22 SCU.  After the Waves scored four straight points,  Trasolini converted from the midrange to push the lad back to four. Lorene Jackson hit a jumper just before the half, and Pepperdine capped a 6-0 run to take a two point lead to the half.

In the first half, Santa Clara shot 34.5 percent (10 of 29) from the field, including 28.6 percent from beyond the arc (4 of 14). The Broncos collected 15 rebounds, six assists, five steals, and five blocks.  They shot 85.7 percent from the free throw line (5 of 6) with six turnovers. Pepperdine shot 39.1 percent (9 of 23) from the field, including 25 percent from beyond the arc (1 of 4). The Waves collected 20 rebounds, four assists, five steals and one block.  They shot 76.5 percent from the free throw line (13 of 17) with eight turnovers.  Cowels led the Broncos with seven points. Trasolini and Roquemore each added six while Dowdell pulled down five boards. Jackson paced Pepperdine with 10 while Darby added nine.

The two teams went back and fourth to start the second half as Foster began to heat up, knocking down two threes in route to a 40-38 Bronco lead at 16:41. Foster nailed a mid range jumper, scoring his 600th point of the season. 

Trasolini followed with a floater plus the foul, and the Broncos led by seven with 15:16 remaining in the second. Pepperdine responded immediately, putting together a 5-0 run.  Roquemore ended the run with a bank three, but Jackson would knock down a pair of free throws.

The two teams traded baskets for the next couple of minutes until Roquemore hit a floater to put the Broncos up 56-51 at 9:24. Thompson converted a layup and Suttle Jr. hit a free throw to keep the Waves within two.
Trasolini hit from the midrange but Jackson responded from three to keep the score within one. Trasolini converted back-to-back post moves and Foster nailed a three after two Pepperdine free throws to push the score to six.
Jackson scored four points in a row to cut the Broncos lead within two at 1:33. Trasolini hit another bucket and Roquemore hit two free throws with fourty seconds left. Lowery's three with twenty seconds remaining cut the Bronco lead to three.
After a Cowel's missed free throw, Suttle Jr. drove the floor and converted a layup. Roquemore nailed two free throws with eight seconds left, and the Broncos held on for victory.