Broncos Drop WCC Home Opener To Pepperdine

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SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara's three guards combined for 47 points with Jared Brownridge leading the way with 18, but the Broncos couldn't overcome a career performance from Brendan Lane and fell to Pepperdine 70-61 in their WCC home opener Thursday night at Leavey Center.

Santa Clara drops to 8-8 on the year, 1-1 in WCC play while Pepperdine goes to 10-5 and has its first 3-0 start in conference play since the 2009-10 season. The Broncos return to the court on Saturday when they host Loyola Marymount in a WCC game at 3:00 p.m.

Brownridge scored 16 of his team-high 18 points in the first half connecting on all four 3-point shots to tie Raymond Cowels III for the sixth-most made 3-pointers by a freshman in school history with 46. Brandon Clark added 16 points and Evan Roquemore scored 13 with eight rebounds.

For the game Santa Clara shot 42.4% from the field (25-of-59), including 27.8% from beyond the arc (5-of-18) and 60% from the free throw line (6-of-10).  The Broncos collected 30 rebounds, 3 steals, 13 assists, 5 blocks and 8 turnovers.

"We did a poor job rebounding the ball, that has to be a commitment going forward or it will be the same old, same old," said Broncos' head coach Kerry Keating. "We didn't get to the free throw line enough, we didn't score in the paint enough, because of that bad shots hurt," he added.

Lane, a senior transfer from UCLA, grabbed a career-high 17 rebounds and matched his career-high with 26 points. He also blocked four shots in a dominating performance. Lane hit 10 of 15 field goals, many from in close, and was 3 of 4 from the free throw line.

"Brendan Lane is a high-level player and he's a very good player," Keating stated. "Stacy Davis is also a good player."

Davis, the Waves' leading scorer, was held to just eight points on 3 of 12 shooting. It was the fourth time this season Davis failed to score in double figures.

The Waves shot 43.1% from the field (25-of-58), including 41.7% from beyond the arc (5-of-12) and 75% from the free throw line (15-of-20).  Pepperdine collected 41 rebounds, 1 steal, 12 assists, 4 blocks and 8 turnovers.

Jeremy Major added 11 points with seven assists and Malcolm Brooks scored 11 to help Pepperdine end a 2-game losing skid to the Broncos.

Atif Russell scored the game's first four points and the Waves took a 6-0 lead 4 minutes in with some help from the Broncos. Santa Clara's first six possessions resulted in five missed field goals and a turnover before Brownridge hit a 3-pointer to get SCU on the scoreboard at 15:53.

A Brandon Clark jumper from the top of the key capped a 7-0 run and gave Santa Clara its first lead at 7-6 with 14:29 to play. The first half would be a back and forth affair with the score being tied four times and the lead changing hands eight times.

Santa Clara grabbed its largest lead at 22-17 when Brownridge connected with his fourth 3-pointer at 9:15 of the first half. The Waves stormed back and took the lead for good at 30-28 with 3:39 left in the first half on a 3-pointer from Brooks.

Two free throws from Lane gave the Waves their largest lead of the game at nine points, 50-41, with just over 15 minutes left in regulation.

Santa Clara went on an 8-0 run to cut the deficit to one at 50-49 with 13:12 left and tied the game at 55-55 on a layup by Jalen Richard with 8:28 left. Lane scored six of Pepperdine's next seven points and a three-pointer by Jeremy Major gave the Waves a 63-59 lead with 3:03 to play.

The Broncos connected on just one of their final six field goal attempts.

NOTES: The Broncos used the same starting lineup (Evan Roquemore, Brandon Clark, Jared Brownridge, John McArthur and Jerry Brown) for the fourth straight game ... Roquemore started his 103rd game to tie Dan Weiss (1984-88) for 7th on the SCU career list and grabbed 8 rebounds to match his second highest career total ... Pepperdine's Atif Russell left the game with an apparent leg injury with 5:25 left in the first half but returned to the game a few minutes later ... Robert Garrett had 3 blocked shots in just 8 minutes of playing time.