Broncos Finish Last Full Practice Before Championship Game Wednesday Night; Host Welcome Back Thursday at 12:30 pm
Santa Clara will host a welcome back salute to the Bronco Basketball Team at 12:30 pm on Thurs., March 31 at Benson Student Center on the Santa Clara University campus as the basketball team and Coach Keating return to campus. Everyone is invited!
Winner of its last seven of eight games, Santa Clara (23-14, 8-6 WCC) travels 30 minutes north of New York City to New Rochelle, N.Y. to face Iona College (25-11, 13-5 MAAC) in the finals of the CollegeInsider.com Post-season Tournament on Wed., March 30 at 5 pm (Pacific). The game will be televised nationally on Fox Sports with Dave Baker and Kyle Macy making the call.
Old Dominion won the inaugural CIT in 2009 and has advanced to the NCAA Tournament the past two seasons. Missouri State won in 2010 and grabbed the regular season Missouri Valley Conference title this season, advancing to the NIT.
Santa Clara, playing in its first-ever post-season tournament final (non-league), advanced with a 72-55 win at SMU on March 25 behind the 35 points of Houston native Kevin Foster. Foster was 5 of 13 from the three and an impressive 8 of 10 from inside with a career-high 23 attempts (13 of 23).
Santa Clara won the only meeting with Iona: 68-47 on Dec. 17, 1960 in Portland, Ore..
Santa Clara has only won 23+ games twice in school history and its the first 23+ win season since 1969-70.
It will be Kerry Keating's eighth championship game he has coached in, including working as assistant coach at UCLA in its 73-57 loss to Florida in the NCAA title game in 2006. Its his first title game as a head coach at Santa Clara in four years. The Bronco coaching staff has combined to play or coach in 23 championship games.
First-year head coach Tim Cluess has coached the Gaels to 25 wins this season - tied for the best first-year start this year with Tim Floyd of UTEP.
Santa Clara has won four 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 (17-17: 11-13 NCAA; 2-4 NIT, 4-0 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 Iona game will be televised nationally on Fox Sports with Dave Baker and Kyle Macy making the call. It will also 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 Other Gaels
The Iona College basketball team escaped with an 83-80 win over East Tennessee State in its CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament semi-final matchup at MSHA Athletics Center. Junior Mike Glover posted his 20th double-double of the season with a game-high 33 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Gaels.
Glover helped will the Gaels to victory in a traditionally-tough environment to play in. The Buccaneers had lost just three of their last 46 non-conference games on their home floor. Glover shot 13-for-19 from the field and 7-for-10 from the charity stripe in the victory. He was supported by rookie Sean Armand's 20 points. Armand matched his career-high and Iona rookie single-game record with six three-pointers in the win. He also surpassed teammate Kyle Smyth's single-season rookie record set just last season.
Santa Clara and Iona combined for 33 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. Iona was 5-2 vs. NCAA teams, 1-4 vs. NIT teams, 1-0 vs. CBI teams and 2-1 vs. CIT teams for a combined record of 9-7. Its NCAA wins were vs. Richmond, Long Island University, and two against St. Peters. Its NCAA losses were to Syracuse and St. Peters.
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. Troy Payne added 12 points and nine rebounds and Ben Dowdell scored 11.
Santa Clara is the No. 1 team in the country in free throws made at 707 and the No. 2 team in the country in free throws attempted with 972. LIU is No. 1 in attempts at 999.
The Colorado duo of Cory Higgins and Alec Burks have made the most free throws as a duo this season (play Tuesday night in NIT semi-finals). Kevin Foster and Evan Roquemore are the No. 2 duo nationally with 325 made free throws (Foster has hit 167 and Roquemore has hit 158).
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 and Evan Roquemore broke Brody Angley's school record for minutes played in a season (1,090, 2007-08).
This season the Broncos featured four players in double figures in WCC play and have three overall. Scoring in double figures are: Kevin Foster (20.3, 20.7 WCC), Marc Trasolini (12.8, 12.5 WCC), Evan Roquemore (11.9, 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 6.1 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 leads the team with 3.73 apg.
The country's top three-pointer shooter, Foster (3.70 threes per game) shattered the 22-year old WCC three pointers made single season record on March 18 vs. Air Force. Foster has hit 137 threes this year, tops in the NCAA, breaking Jeff Fryer's single season WCC record (LMU, 126, 1988-89). He is tied for No. 11 on the NCAA single season list.
His 750 points this season are No. 8 on the WCC's single season points scored list and he needs five points to pass LMU's Hank Gathers at No. 7 (754, 1990) and six points to pass USF's Quintin Dailey at No. 6 (755, 1982). Foster would then also be the leading scorer in a single season in the Bay Area as well. 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 50 straight games and set to break the career games played record at Iona, Dowdell scored 10.5 ppg with 5.3 rpg in league play.
As of March 29, Santa Clara is No. 45 nationally in rebounding margin, No. 51 in scoring offense, No. 68 in free throw percentage, No. 80 in steals and No. 79 in three-point FG percentage. Santa Clara has made more free throws than any other team in the country and is No. 2 nationally in attempts.
Nationally Kevin Foster is No. 1 in threes made per game, No. 20 in ppg and No. 52 in three-point field goal percentage. Evan Roquemore is No. 92 in free throw percentage.
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. 15 with 1,356 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 (750) - Trasolini (460) duo have combined for 1,210 points this year and are now the No. 1 on SCU Single Season Scoring Duo. They are just the seventh pair to hit 1,000 points in a season. 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).
* In losses Kevin Foster carries more of the scoring load with an increase from 20.1 to 20.5 ppg.
* Marc Trasolini, Ben Dowdell, Troy Payne and Evan Roquemore score a combined 11.5 more points in wins than in loses.
* Evan 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, 1.91 and 1.07 respectively.
* Marc Trasolini only shoots .244 from three at home with an increase to .379 on the road.
* Ben Dowdell averages two more rebounds per game at home with 5.5 rpg compared to 3.5 on the road.
How Bout Them Apples?
Santa Clara has scored a school record 2,734 points this season. They have made a school record 265 threes this year. The previous record was 224 in 2003-04. The Broncos have attempted 755 threes. The school record was 662 in 2003-04.
Santa Clara has made 707 free throws. The school record was 606 in 1968-69. They have attempted 972 free throws, breaking the school record which was 858 in 1968-69.
Santa Clara has 770 personal fouls. The school record was 695 in 1986-87.
The Broncos have a school record 270 steals. The school record was 232 in 2009-10 (ties 1997-98)
Also in the top 10, the Broncos are shooting 72.7 percent from the free throw line, good enough for No. 5. The 1966-67 team shot a school-record 77.0 percent from the charity stripe.
They are No. 3 with 1,329 rebounds and No. 5 with 115 blocked shots.
Santa Clara has attempted a school record 1,987 field goals. They are tied for No. 2 with 474 assists. The 1983-84 team is No. 1 with 504.
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.
SCU 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. It has scored 90+ four times - a first in 20 years.
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.
Success on Court-Climbing Statistics
Kevin Foster has scored 750 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. 8 on the WCC single season list as well.
Foster has hit 137 threes this season with 368 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 244, 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, named No. 20 Freshman nationally this season by BasketballProspectus.com in January (only WCC player), 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 16 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 28 of the last 29 games after coming off the bench the first eight games of his rookie campaign Averaging 11.9ppg, a team-leading 3.7apg 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+ = 35
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 49 of 75 career games and he has scored 19+ in 35 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)
35. at SMU/March 25, 2011 35 (5)