Men Basketball Hosts Pacific Union Saturday Night

Evan Roquemore shoots a free throw at No. 1 Duke.

Santa Clara Game Notes

Santa Clara (5-2) will play its final game of its six-game homestand on Sat., Dec. 8 at 7 pm with Pacific Union (0-6).  The Broncos haven't played since they lost back-to-back overtime games last week as its been Final Week on the Mission campus.  Pacific Union College is a fully accredited Seventh-Day Adventist Christian liberal arts college, founded in 1882 and located in California's Napa Valley. The Pioneers play out of Pacific Auditorium (often referred to as "The Covered Wagon") and are members of the NAIA who play out of the California Pacific Conference.

The men will then hit the road for a two-game road swing locally in the Bay Area that will include a 7 pm game at San Jose State on Dec. 11 and a 5 pm game at Pacific on Dec. 15.

The Broncos are just 2.4 seconds from being undefeated this season, giving up a late 3-point basket in each and losing both in overtime to fall to 5-2 in 2012-13. Utah State's Preston Medlin hit a game-tying three with 2.4 seconds left in regulation to send the game into OT and the Aggies handed Santa Clara its first loss of the season, 80-78, on Nov. 28. The Broncos endured a similar fate against UC Santa Barbara on Dec. 1, when Kyle Boswell hit a contested three at the regulation buzzer to tie the game, 71-71. Trailing, 83-80, with seven seconds left in OT, Kevin Foster was fouled before attempting a potential game-tying shot. Foster missed both free throw attempts and the Broncos dropped their second straight.

After connecting on 50% or better of their field goal attempts in four of their first five games and averaging 50.3% from the field during a season-opening five-game win streak, the Broncos cooled while suffering their first two defeats of the 2012-13 campaign last week. SCU made a season-low 24 field goals in each of the two games and shot a combined 39.3% from the field in losses to Utah State and UC Santa Barbara. The Broncos shot 42.1% from the field (24 of 57) against Utah State and followed that with a season-low 36.9% (24 of 65) against UCSB. The Broncos lost both games in OT.

 

Look and Listen 

The Pacific Union game on Saturday will be broadcast live (audio and video streaming) on the web at www.SantaClaraBroncos.com and also live on KDOW 1220 AM with the broadcast beginning at 7 p.m. Pacific.  Anthony Passarelli is in his sixth season as the Broncos' play-by-play announcer. Out of the listening area, KDOW is streamed online at www.1220kdow.com.  

 

Foster Named Player of the Month 

Santa Clara senior guard Kevin Foster was named the West Coast Conference Player of the Month for November 2012. Foster averaged 21.7 points per game in leading SCU to a 5-1 month, its best start since 1968. Foster connected on 46.9% of his field goal attempts, 40% from beyond the three-point arc (20-for-50), and 86% from the free throw line. In addition, Foster averaged 4.2 steals -- tops in the nation last month -- and 4.2 assists per contest.  He scored 21+ points four times last month.

"Congratulations to Kevin for starting the season strong and coming back with a successful start given the adversity we faced at the end of last season," said Bronco head coach Kerry Keating.  "For him to be recognized as the Player of the Month with the caliber of players we have in this conference is a special recognition.  It says a lot about him, his teammates and staff. I know he is and we are all looking forward to building on it."

"Being named Player of the Month is a special honor," said Foster.  "With players like Elias Harris of Gonzaga, Matthew Dellavedova of Saint Mary's, Brandon Davies of BYU, Anthony Ireland of LMU – the list goes on and on – it really says something. I know my teammates and I have worked really hard in the off-season to come back strong this year. Our work isn't done yet. We know we have a ways to go, but I am happy to see how strong Marc Trasolini has come back from his knee injury. Evan Roquemore is doing a good job running the offense as well."

Foster passed Kurt Rambis to become Santa Clara's all-time leading scorer with 1,849 points in the Broncos 74-63 win at Saint Louis on Nov. 14 when he scored 30 points.  In addition to being the school's all-time leading scorer, he is also No. 1 in field goal attempts (1,494), threes attempted (912) and threes made (335).

Also nominated for WCC Player of the Month: Brandon Davies, BYU; Elias Harris, Gonzaga; Lorne Jackson, Pepperdine; Matthew Dellavedova, Saint Mary's; Johnny Dee, San Diego; Cole Dickerson, San Francisco

 

Niyi Back 

Niyi Harrison saw his first game action of the season against Utah State on Nov. 28, but it wasn't much. Harrison entered the game with 46 seconds left in the first half and ended the stanza with no stats. He didn't play in the second half or OT.   But he made himself known in the UCSB game when he played 25 minutes off the bench and grabbed 11 rebounds and scored seven points.  

Harrison hadn't played in the first five gamed due to back spasms, but could be a key contributor if he gets healthy. The senior played In 100 games during his first three seasons and averaged career-bests of 10.7 points and 6.3 rebounds while playing in all 30 games last season.

 

Minutes 

Marc Trasolini, Kevin Foster, and Evan Roquemore have started all seven games for the Broncos and have combined for 234 starts in their Santa Clara careers. Each of the three is also averaging over 30 minutes a contest. The trio has produced by accounting for 61.5% of the team's point production while combining to shoot 48.8% from the field. Foster (158), Trasolini (105) and Roquemore (98) have scored 361 of the team's 587 points.

 

National Leaders 

The Broncos reached the 80-point mark for the fourth time this season in their 83-80 loss to UCSB on Dec 1 and rank ninth in the NCAA in per game scoring at 83.9. The average is boosted by the team's scoring output in a season opening 106-66 win over Simpson College on Nov. 10. The point total in that game tied for the 13th highest in SCU history and was the first 100-point game since scoring 101 against Pepperdine on Jan 21, 2008. SCU tallied 89 against Eastern Washington (Nov. 23) and 85 against USC Upstate (Nov. 20) and have scored at least 74 points in every game. The Broncos scored 80 or more points in a game just three times during the 2011-12 season and have not averaged more than 80 points a game for an entire season since 1979-80.

Despite a season-high 14 turnovers in a loss to Utah State on Nov. 28, SCU still ranks second nationally as of Dec. 3 with an assist-turnover ratio of 1.91. Pittsburgh is the only Division I team to average more than two assists per turnover (2.11). The Broncos had 20 assists on their 24 field goals against UCSB, their third 20+ assist game of the season, and rank fourth in Division I with 18.6 per game. SCU has assisted on 65.3% of its field goals with Evan Roquemore posting a team-best 6.3 per game, good for 20th in Division I. 

Kevin Foster had a career-best nine assists vs. UCSB and averages 4.9 per game. Foster has also been a threat defensively compiling a team-high 26 steals to rank third nationally with 3.1 per game. He established a career-best with seven steals in a win at St. Louis on Nov. 14, and has at least three steals in six of seven games. Foster has matched his steals total of last season when he played in 18 games.

 

Dishes

Junior Evan Roquemore has tallied a team-best 44 assists and ranks 20th nationally with 6.3 per game. Roquemore has handed out 5 or more assists in each of the last six games and totaled a season-high 9 in consecutive games vs. Eastern Washington (Nov. 23) and Utah State (Nov. 28). At his current pace for the entire season, Roquemore has a shot at breaking John Woolery's 1993-94 single season record of 190 and could also become the fourth Bronco with 500 career assists by the end of his junior season. E-Rock has been scoring the basketball as well. He went for a season-best 23 points vs. Utah State and followed with a 22-point game vs. UCSB (Dec. 1), giving him nine career 20-point games and back-to-back 20-point games for the second time in his career.

 

Moving  

Kevin Foster has reached double figures in scoring six times in seven games and has topped the 20-point mark five times to lead the Broncos in scoring and rank 7th nationally with 22.6 ppg. Foster scored a game-high 27 against Utah State on Nov. 28, including his 1,800th career point, on, what else, a 3-point basket. He was also fouled on the play and converted his second 4-point play of the season. Foster added 28 points against UCSB on Dec. 1, and in the two games moved up five spots on the West Coast Conference career scoring list. With a career total of 1,849, Foster passed Clint Richardson (1,803), Darrell Tucker (1,805), Matt Santangelo (1,810), Quintin Dailey (1,841) and Omar Samhan (1,846) to move into 12th place on the WCC career chart. It is unlikely he will catch LMU's Hank Gathers (1987-90) for the league's top spot (2,490), but Foster could crack the top five and at his current pace for an entire season take the No. 2 overall spot, currently held by LMU's Terrell Lowery (2,201). Foster broke Kurt Rambis' SCU career points record at 16:01 in the second half at St. Louis on Nov. 14. Rambis, the WCC Player of the Year in 1980, scored 1,735 points from 1976-80.

Foster, named to the 2012 Preseason All-WCC in late October, was named the WCC Player of the Week in the opening week of the college basketball season.  He opened the 2012-13 season in impressive fashion, scoring 27 points and dishing out nine assists with four rebounds and two steals with no turnovers in a Bronco victory over Simpson University -- a team playing its fifth game of the season. Foster sank seven three pointers.

He currently sits third in West Coast Conference annals with 335 career three-point field goals made, just one behind Jared Stohl of Portland (336, 2007-11). The WCC record in a career is help by Jeff Fryer. He made 363 from 1987-90.  Foster already holds the WCC record with 140 threes made in a season (2010-11). Foster has made at least one 3-point shot in 96 of his 102 games played and has made five or more 3s in a game 24 times. Foster launched 13 3-point shots vs. UCSB on Dec. 1 to eclipse the 900 career mark (912) and is averaging 9.0 3-point attempts per game this season.

Foster scored a team season-high 30 points in a 74-62 win at St. Louis on Nov. 14, the fifth game of 30 or more points in his career and the first time he's reached that total since scoring 35 points at SMU on March 25, 2011. Foster was 10 of 18, including 2 of 3 from beyond the arc.  He also collected seven steals and five assists in 35 minutes.  His seven steals were tied for second-best in school history in a single game with two other players and the most since Deron Perkins had 10 steals at San Diego on Feb. 24, 2005.