Basketball Hits the Road in Search of a CIT Championship Game Berth
Led by Houston native Kevin Foster, Santa Clara (22-14, 8-6 WCC) will travel to Dallas, Texas to face Southern Methodist (20-14, 8-8 CUSA) in the semi-finals of the CollegeInsider.com Post-season Tournament on Fri., March 25 at 5 pm (Pacific). The all-time series is knotted up at 1-1 the home team winning in 1987 (SMU won Dec. 21, 1987 78-70) and 1988 (SCU won 64-61 on Dec. 22, 1988). Santa Clara has only won 22+ games five times in school history and its the first 22+ win season since 1983-84. It has won 23+ games just twice with the last time being in 1969-70.
Santa Clara has won three games in the post-season for the first time in school history. The last time it played at least four post-season games was in 1952 when the Broncos advanced to the NCAA Final Four in Seattle with wins over UCLA (68-59) and Wyoming (64-53). It dropped games to Kansas (75-55) and Illinois (67-64) at the Final Four that year. Kansas, coached by Phog Allen, won the national title with a 80-63 victory over St. John's, coached by Frank McGuire. The tournament that year was the first to have a true "Final Four" format, with the winners at four regional sites advancing to the final site
It is the first time in 15 years that Santa Clara has played in the post-season and its 16th appearance in school history (14-17: 11-13 NCAA; 2-4 NIT, 3-0 CIT). In its last post-season appearance Santa Clara defeated Maryland 91-79 in the first round of the 1996 NCAA Tournament before falling 76-51 to Kansas in the second round, who advanced to the Elite Eight before losing to eventual NCAA runner-up Syracuse.
See and Hear
The SMU game will be broadcast via the Bronco Radio Network on both KDOW 1220 AM and Broncos All-Access @ www.SantaClaraBroncos.com with the broadcast beginning at 5 pm Pacific. Anthony Passarelli is in his fourth season as the Broncos' play-by-play announcer. Out of the listening area, KDOW is streamed online live at www.1220kdow.com. The game will also be streamed online live: http://www.b2livetv.com/partner_members.asp?id=379
The Scoop on SMU
SMU advanced with a 57-50 win at Northern Iowa in the quarterfinal round on March 21. Papa Dia had 17 points and a CIT-record 21 rebounds. To purchase, call the SMU Ticket Office at 214-SMU-GAME (768-4263).
The Mustangs have won three games in the postseason for the second time in school history (advanced to 1956 NCAA Final Four). SMU won the first two games of this year's CIT at home. In the first round March 16, SMU defeated Oral Roberts 64-57 in overtime. In the second round March 19, Dia hit two free throws with one-tenth of a second remaining to give SMU a 63-62 victory.
SMU already has its first 20-win season and its first trip to the postseason since 1999-00 (21-9). SMU also had its most league wins (8) in Conference USA. Three Mustangs earned Conference USA postseason honors. Dia was named Conference USA Defensive Player of the Year. Dia also made the All-Conference USA First Team, Conference USA All-Defensive Team and NABC All-District 11 First Team. Junior forward Robert Nyakundi was named to the All-Conference USA Third Team and senior guard Collin Mangrum earned selection to the Conference USA All-Academic Team.
Santa Clara and SMU combined for 27 games vs. the post-season field. Santa Clara was 2-4 vs. NCAA teams, 1-4 vs. NIT teams, 1-0 vs. CBI teams and 1-4 vs. CIT teams for a combined record of 5-12. The Broncos' NCAA wins were over Gonzaga and Northern Colorado with losses to Gonzaga, Southern California, Arizona and UC Santa Barbara. SMU was 2-2 vs. NCAA teams, 0-3 vs. NIT teams, 0-1 vs. CBI teams and 1-1 vs. CIT teams for a combined record of 3-7. Its NCAA wins were vs. Alabama State and Memphis with losses vs. Arkanas-Little Rock and vs. UAB.
Rewind for a Second
Santa Clara defeated San Francisco March 22 in a hard-fought war, coming out on top 95-91 in the two school's 208th all-time meeting. Santa Clara is 10-0 when it scores 80+ this season and 18-1 in Coach Keating's four years. Its 45 points in the first half were the most for SCU since it scored 46 vs. Bethany on Jan. 3, 2011. Its 50 points in the second half were the most since it scored 60 points at CSU-Northridge on Dec. 22, 2010 and the Broncos have scored 90+ points in four games this season for the first time since 1990-91.
The six Bronco turnovers were the fewest turnovers Santa Clara has had since it turned the ball over five times vs. Saint Mary's Feb. 2, 2005.
Individually Santa Clara was led by a career-high 30 points by Evan Roquemore, including key free throws at the end of the game. Kevin Foster followed up with 27 points, hitting 12 of 15 from the free throw line, with a team-high five assists. Foster has 132 threes on the year, good for No. 22 all-time in the NCAA in a single season. Troy Payne added 12 points and nine rebounds and Dowdell scored 11.
CIT; 6-1 Lately
Santa Clara is 6-1 in its last seven games, including a 3-0 record in the CIT. The following are a few items of note.
* Kevin Foster is averaging 4.7 apg, up from 3.8 on the season.
* Marc Trasolini is averaging 9.3 rpg, up from 6.0 on the season.
* Evan Roquemore is averaging 2.33 three-pointers per game, up from 1.6 on the season.
* SCU is scoring almost 10 points per game more in the CIT (83.7) than in the season (73.9).
* SCU is out-scoring its opponents by 7.3 points per game in the CIT as opposed to 2.7 on the season.
Won 6 of Last 7
* The Broncos free throw percentage is up from .729 during the season to .783.
* Evan Roquemore is shooting .500 from the field and .516 from three, up from .384 and .418 respectively.
* Marc Trasolini is averaging 19.0 ppg and 7.9 rpg, up from 13.0 and 6.0.
* Santa Clara is out-rebounding its opponents by two more per game, 3.9 to 5.9.
* SCU is limiting opponents to only 2.0 bpg as opposed to 3.3 during the rest of the season.
Santa Clara is the No. 1 team in the country in free throws made at 695 and the No. 2 team in the country in free throws attempted with 954. LIU is No. 1 in attempts at 999.
The Colorado duo of Cory Higgins and Alec Burks have made 413 free throws. Kevin Foster and Evan Roquemore are the No. 2 duo nationally with 319 made free throws (Foster has hit 163 and Roquemore has hit 156).
One More 30-Second Timeout
Taking a quick 30-second time-out to look at back at Santa Clara's 88-75 win over Air Force, Kevin Foster broke the school record with nine threes, tying a career-high with 36 points. Foster shattered the WCC single season threes made record with 129 this season and grabbed back the country's top spot in threes made per game when he scored nine threes and Andrew Goudelock of College of Charleston hit zero threes in CofC's NIT win at Cleveland State. Marc Trasolini scored 19 points and was just one rebound from posting back-to-back double-doubles for the first time in his career. Both Foster (1,109) and Evan Roquemore (1,096) broke Brody Angley's school record for minutes played in a season (1,090, 2007-08).SCU is 7-0 this season when scoring 80+ and 14-1 under Coach Keating.
This season the Broncos featured four players in double figures in WCC play and have three overall. Scoring in double figures are: Kevin Foster (19.9, 20.7 WCC), Marc Trasolini (13.0, 12.5 WCC), Evan Roquemore (12.2, 11.8 WCC) and Ben Dowdell (8.1, 10.5 WCC). Foster leads the WCC in ppg. Trasolini leads the team in overall games with 6.0 rpg and Troy Payne led in WCC play with 8.0 rpg and second overall with 5.9 rpg. Payne is the team leader with 1.6 spg and Foster follows him with 1.6 spg. Roquemore and Foster both dish exactly 3.78 apg.
The country's top three-pointer shooter, Foster (3.67 threes per game) shattered the 22-year old West Coast Conference three pointers made single season record on March 18 vs. Air Force. Foster has hit 132 threes this year, tops in the NCAA, breaking Jeff Fryer's single season WCC record (LMU, 126, 1988-89). His 715 points this season are No. 10 on the WCC's single season points scored list. He has already broken the school's single season mark for points scored, minutes played, threes made and threes attempted. Foster was named first-team All-WCC and was named the WCC POM for February.
Trasolini, the WCC Player of the Week Feb. 28, scored 22 in two straight WCC Tournament games and has already scored his 1,000th career point. Payne was named the WCC Defender of the Year. Roquemore, who has already broken the Bronco freshman records in minutes played, free throw percentage, three-point percentage, assists, free throws made and free throws attempted, was named to the WCC All-Freshman team after averaging a league-leading 11.8 ppg for newcomers in WCC play. Starting 49 straight games and No. 2 on the career games played list (126) entering the USF game, Dowdell scored 10.5 ppg with 5.3 rpg in league play.
Kevin Foster was the first WCC sophomore ever and the 28th player in school history to score 1,000 career points on Jan. 20. Marc Trasolini was the 29th player to score 1,000 career points on Feb. 26. Foster is currently at No. 17 with 1,320 career points and Trasolini is at No. 24 with 1,096 points. Foster and Trasolini were the first duo to both hit 1,000 career points in the same year since then-seniors Jens Gordon and Mitch Burley did it in 1988-89. Gordon scored 522 points to finish his career with 1,356 and Burley scored 377 to finish with 1,258 career points.
The Foster (715) - Trasolini (456) duo have combined for 1,171 points this year (No. 2 on SCU Single Season Duo list). They are just the seventh pair to hit 1,000 points in a season. They need 34 points combined to be the all-time best scoring tandem. Foster's in the top five already, scoring 486 points his freshman year with WCC Player of the Year John Bryant scoring 596 (No. 4 with 1,082 points).
As of March 21, Santa Clara is No. 45 nationally in rebounding margin, No. 61 in scoring offense, No. 63 in free throw percentage, No. 68 in steals and No. 83 in three-point FG percentage. Santa Clara has attempted and made more free throws than any other team in the country.
Nationally Kevin Foster is No. 1 in threes made per game, No. 28 in ppg and No. 50 in three-point field goal percentage. Evan Roquemore is No. 91 in free throw percentage.
In losses Kevin Foster carries more of the scoring load with an increase from 19.5 to 20.5 ppg. Marc Trasolini, Ben Dowdell, Troy Payne and Evan Roquemore score a combined 10.8 more points in wins than in loses. Roquemore's assist to turnover ratio goes from 1.83 in wins to 1.37 in losses. Troy Payne averages almost a full steal more in Bronco wins than in loses, 2.00 and 1.07 respectively. Trasolini only shoots .244 from three at home with an increase to .393 on the road. Dowdell averages more than two more rebounds per game at home with 5.5 rpg compared to 3.4 on the road.
How Bout Them Apples?
Santa Clara has scored a school record 2,662 points this season. They have made a school record 259 threes this year. The previous record was 224 in 2003-04. The Broncos have attempted 711 threes. The school record was 662 in 2003-04.
Santa Clara has made 695 free throws. The school record was 606 in 1968-69. They have attempted 954 free throws, breaking the school record which was 858 in 1968-69.
Santa Clara has 753 personal fouls. The school record was 695 in 1986-87. The Broncos have a school record 263 steals. The school record was 232 in 2009-10 (ties 1997-98)
Also in the top 10, the Broncos are shooting 72.9 percent from the free throw line, good enough for a tie for No. 4. The 1966-67 team shot a school-record 77.0 percent from the charity stripe. They are No. 3 with 1,286 rebounds and No. 5 with 114 blocked shots.
Santa Clara has attempted a school record 1,987 field goals. They are No. 4 with 467 assists. The 1983-84 team is No. 1 with 504.
This season Troy Payne watched his teammates crush it at the free throw line many times. Evan Roquemore went 10-10 vs. Northern Colorado (Nov. 23), Kevin Foster was 13 of 13 at LMU (Jan. 29) and then Marc Trasolini went 17-20 vs. LMU (Feb. 24). Payne, a career 56.9 percent free throw shooter, entered the Northern Arizona game shooting 52.1 percent from the line this season and 53.5 percent in his career. He shot a season-high six free throws in only two games this year. So what? Payne, who said later "I got there early and made some adjustments prior to the game", had ice water running through his veins vs. Northern Arizona, hitting a career-best 12 of 13 from the free throw line, scoring a career-high 18 points to lead the Broncos to a 68-63 victory. The Broncos were 27 of 33 from the free throw line (81.8 percent).
Marc Trasolini led the team with 13.7 ppg, 6.1 rpg and 1.6 bpg last year and with his play the last three weeks he is getting closer to those numbers, averaging 13.0 ppg, 6.0 rpg and 1.0 bpg this season. In the last six games, with Santa Clara posting a 5-1 record, Trasolini is averaging 19.0 ppg and 7.9 rpg. Trasolini scored a career-high 31 vs. LMU on Feb. 24, added 31 (vs. Pepperdine), 22 (vs. LMU, WCC Tourney), 22 again (vs. Saint Mary's, WCC Tourney) and just 12 vs. NAU, but he scored a career-high 14 rebounds in the win over the Lumberjacks. He added 19 points vs. Air Force with nine rebounds. He is No. 24 on the career points list for Santa Clara with 1,096.
Scoring his 1,000 career point Feb. 26 and leading the Broncos to their first season sweep of Pepperdine and LMU in 27 years, Trasolini was named the WCC Player of the Week Feb. 28. It was Trasolini's first Player of the Week honors in his career and the third for SCU this season. Trasolini averaged 26.0 ppg in victories over LMU and Pepperdine (Feb 24-26), shooting 56.7 percent and 7.5 rpg. He hit 18 of 21 free throws, shooting 85.7 percent - making the first 14 free throws vs. LMU. He was 17 of 20 from the free throw line vs. LMU. His 17 free throws were the second most-ever for a Bronco and the 20 attempts were also the second-most for a Bronco (Steve Nash was 21 of 21 vs. SMC in 1995). Trasolini also shot 10-for-15 from the field vs. Pepperdine, shooting 66.7 percent and finished league play with 12.5 ppg and 5.1 rpg, shooting almost 81 percent from the FT line.
Payne WCC Defensive POY, Foster, Roquemore All-WCC
Leading the West Coast Conference in steals and fourth in rebounding, Troy Payne was named the WCC Defensive Player of the Year on March 1. He is the first Bronco player in school history to receive this award. Kevin Foster was named to the All-WCC First Team and Evan Roquemore was named to the All-WCC Freshman team. Foster is the 58th Bronco in school history to be named to the First Team.
Santa Clara is playing in the post-season for the first time in 15 years - the same year it last won a post-season game. It has won 15 games at home as well.
Santa Clara leads the WCC in steals in overall games. It has only led the league in steals in overall games once: 1997 when it had 207 steals.
Santa Clara's three WCC Players of the Week outright this year are the most it has had since 1994-95 when it had four (Steve Nash three x, Marlon Garnett once). John Bryant was WCC POW three times in 2008-09, but he shared it with Patty Mills of Saint Mary's once.
Santa Clara defeated CSUN 99-79 on Dec. 22. The Broncos put six players in double figures. It was first time since Santa Clara defeated UCSC at home on Nov. 25, 2002, 93-70, that it had six players in double figures. The 99 points on the road for the Broncos were the most they scored since they lost 105-103 at Portland on Jan. 25, 1980.
Santa Clara scored 90+ in two of its first 13 games of the year for the first time since it won 111-55 on Nov. 27, 1993 and then 92-74 vs. Holy Cross on Dec. 29, 1993.
Santa Clara defeated the Zags for the first time in 10 years at home (Feb. 22, 2001). The 85-71 win on Jan. 20 was the worst defeat the Zags suffered during the WCC regular season slate since 1999.
Santa Clara's win at Pepperdine was its first win in Malibu since it won 83-71 on Jan. 22, 2005. It was just the third win at Pepperdine in 17 years and only its fifth victory in Malibu in 27 years. The Broncos went on to sweep the season series with LMU and Pepperdine for the first time since 1984.
SCU's 20-point comeback in defeating USD on Feb. 12 tied the biggest come from behind victory in school history when it defeated Marquette on Nov. 29, 1996 after being down by 20 in the second half. It is only the second time in 13 years SCU has swept USD.
Ben's Beating'em Down
Ben Dowdell, acknowledging earlier this season that his senior year "will be the one that defines my Bronco career", has posted double figure scoring in 13 games this season, including eight of the last 14 games. Dowdell tied his career-high with 22 points vs. Portland on Jan. 22 and then scored a career-high 26 points vs. LMU on Feb. 24. He also grabbed his second career double-double vs. LMU with a career-high 14 rebounds.
Starting all 36 games this year, Dowdell is averaging 8.0 ppg and 4.6 rpg. Dowdell has posted double figures 27 times in his career: 13 times this year, five times his junior year and nine times his rookie campaign.
He has played in 126 career games (No. 2 in career games played) with 96 career starts (No. 9 in career starts). He is No. 2 on the career fouls list at 385, passing Kurt Rambis at No. 2 (366, 1976-80).
Success on Court-Climbing Statistics
Kevin Foster has scored 715 points this season, breaking Dennis Awtrey's single season school record set 42 years ago (619, 1968-69) vs. LMU on March 5. His tally is No. 10 on the WCC single season list as well.
Foster has hit 132 threes this season with 355 attempts - both single season school records (broke his own records vs. Saint Mary's on Feb. 10). He No. 2 on the Bronco career threes made list with 238, passing Kyle Bailey vs. NAU (225, 2001-05). Steve Nash holds the career threes made school record with 263 makes (1992-96).
Foster has scored 36 points at home twice this season: first 36 vs. Gonzaga on Jan. 20 and then 36 vs. Air Force on March 18. The 36 points are the sixth-most ever for a Bronco at home and the most a player had scored vs. GU since Pep's Keion Bell scored 37 points on Jan. 21, 2010. Foster's career-best prior to the Gonzaga game was the 31 he scored as a freshman at Saint Mary's (Jan. 9, 2009) and his season-best was the 29 he scored in overtime vs. Washington St. on Dec. 19.
Foster broke his own school record with nine threes vs. Air Force. He crushed eight threes on Jan. 8 vs. USF and at Gonzaga on Feb. 17. The eight threes twice tied the then-school record set by Steve Nash (8 at Gonzaga on Jan. 19, 1995) and Mitch Burley (8 vs. Nevada-Reno, Dec. 14, 1988). Foster attempted 20 threes in the USF game, shooting 40.0 percent from beyond the arc. The attempts mark shattered Burley's school record set back in 1988 (17) and Nash's in 1995 (17). The 20 attempts also shattered the WCC record set by Jeff Fryer of LMU vs. SCU on Feb. 24, 1989 (18 att.).
Evan Roquemore has broken six Bronco rookie records this season: minutes played, assists, three-point FG percentage, free throws made, free throws attempted and free throw percentage. Three of the records were set by Brian Jones in 1996-97. Jones was named the 1996 WCC Freshman of the Year and was named All-WCC twice during his career. Roquemore passed Steve Nash's record for free throw percentage by a freshman set in 1992-1993.
He has scored double figures in 13 of the last 15 games, including a career-high 30 points against USF on March 22. While he didn't start Senior night on Feb. 26, he has started 27 of the last 28 games after coming off the bench the first eight games of his rookie campaign Averaging 12.2 ppg, a team-leading 3.8 apg and 3.6 rpg, he had a career-high eight assists at Saint Mary's and at Gonzaga; and a career-high with 30 points at USF on March 22. He has been perfect at the free throw line in 13 games this year: 6 of 6 vs. Rice, 10 of 10 vs. UNC (tying Bronco freshman record), 6 of 6 at SJSU, 7 of 7 vs. Washington State, 6 of 6 at CSUN, 1 of 1 at SMC, 8 of 8 vs. Gonzaga, 2 of 2 at LMU, 6 of 6 vs. USD, 8 of 8 vs. LMU, 4 of 4 vs. Pepperdine, 2 of 2 vs. SMC and 6 of 6 vs. Air Force.
19+ = 34
Kevin Foster was named the WCC Player of the Week Jan. 24. It was the second time he was named WCC Player of the Week this season (Dec. 6 was the other). The GU-UOP series he averaged 53.6 percent from the floor, including 45.0 percent from the three-point line and 84.2 percent from the free throw line. Foster was nicknamed 'Microwave' by his father during his youth after the Detroit Piston's Vinnie Johnson. Johnson earned the nickname 'the Microwave' from Celtics guard Danny Ainge for his ability to score many points in a short period of time, heating up the offense. Foster has scored 15+ points in 48 of 74 career games and he has scored 19+ in 34 career games. Foster's 19+ games follow:
Opponent/Date Pts. (3s)
1. vs. Arizona/Nov. 25, 2008 21 (5)
2. vs. Belmont/Dec. 29, 2008 24 (3)
3. at Harvard/Jan. 2, 2009 20 (4)
4. at Saint Mary's/Jan. 9, 2009 31 (5)
5. at Portland/Jan. 17, 2009 20 (3)
6. vs. LMU/Jan. 29, 2009 20 (3)
7. vs. Saint Mary's/Feb. 7, 2009 26 (4)
8. at LMU/Feb. 14, 2009 26 (5)
9. at USF/Feb. 21, 2009 20 (2)
10. vs. Gonzaga/Feb. 26, 2009 20 (3)
11. vs. San Diego/March 7, 2009 21 (4)
12. at CSUB/Nov. 13, 2009 21 (3)
13. vs. Menlo/Nov. 19, 2009 19 (4)
14. at Pacific/Nov. 22, 2009 22 (5)
15. vs. Fresno State/Nov. 28, 2009 25 (5)
16. vs. CSU Bakersfield/Nov. 12, 2010 19 (4)
17. at So. California/Nov. 15, 2010 26 (4)
18. vs. Bethune-Cookman/Nov. 21, 2010 21 (6)
19. vs. N. Colorado/Nov. 23, 2010 19 (4)
20. vs. UC Santa Barbara/Dec. 4, 2010 25 (6)
21. at San Jose State/Dec. 10, 2010 26 (3)
22. vs. Washington St./Dec. 19, 2010 29 (4)
23. at CSU Northridge/Dec. 22, 2010 22 (2)
24. vs. Bethany/Jan. 3, 2011 19 (6)
25. vs. USF/Jan. 8, 2011 26 (8)
26. vs. Gonzaga/Jan. 20, 2011 36 (6)
27. vs. Portland/Jan. 22, 2011 19 (3)
28. vs. LMU/Jan. 29, 2011 28 (3)
29. vs. St. Mary's/Feb. 10, 2011 25 (4)
30. vs. San Diego/Feb. 12, 2011 21 (3)
31. at Gonzaga/Feb. 17, 2011 27 (8)
32. at Portland/Feb. 19, 2011 29 (7)
33. vs. Air Force/March 18, 2011 36 (9)
34. at USF/March 22, 2011 27 (3)