March 7, 2009

Santa Clara Advances to WCC Semis with 80-69 Win Over San Diego

March 7, 2009

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LAS VEGAS (AP) - John Bryant had 24 points and a West Coast Conference tournament record 27 rebounds Saturday night to lead Santa Clara to an 80-69 victory against San Diego in the quarterfinals. Bryant also broke the SCU WCC Tournament record for rebounds and free throws made.

Bryant, the conference player of the year, had 17 first-half rebounds to help Santa Clara (15-16) build an early double digit lead and advance to the semifinals Sunday against top-seeded Gonzaga.

How big were Bryant's 27 rebounds vs. San Diego?

** It was the most rebounds in an NCAA game in more than three years. Louisiana Tech's Paul Millsap had 28 rebounds vs. San Jose State on Feb. 15, 2006. **It was the most for a Bronco since 1971 (28, Fred Lavaroni, Feb. 15, 1971 vs. Saint Mary's).

** Broke Dennis Awtrey's 39-year-old Bronco career record of 1,135. Bryant now has 1,142. He also moved to No. 3 all-time in Bay Area history, passing No. 4 Bill Cartwright.

** Broke the WCC tournament single-game record of 20, set by USF's Darryl Johnson in 1992. Santa Clara's previous WCC record was 17 by Jens Gordon vs. LMU on March 6, 1989.

** Grabbed three more rebounds than the entire San Diego team and out-rebounded USD counterpart Gyno Pomare 27-0!

** Side-note: he made 12 of 12 free throws and set a Santa Clara WCC Tournament record with the 12 made, breaking a 22-year-old record set by Dan Weiss, who did it twice in 1987.

Bryant's effort helped Santa Clara outrebound San Diego 47-24. Santa Clara, the tournament's No. 4 seed, used an 8-0 run midway through the second half to stop a San Diego rally and take a 52-37 advantage with under eight minutes to play.

Kevin Foster finished with 21 points, and Marc Trasolini contributed 18 points and eight rebounds.