January 1, 2010

Men final two non-conference games of the year

Jan. 1, 2010

Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Armed Forces Day Get Acrobat Reader

Santa Clara (7-8) is half-way through its eight-game homestand. New Hampshire (5-5) and Harvard (9-3) return Santa Clara's visit last season to start the new decade. New Hampshire comes in on Sat., Jan. 2 at 1 pm and Harvard comes calling as the final non-conference game of the year on Mon., Jan. 4 at 7 pm.

New Hampshire has been a member of the America East Conference since 1979. UNH is the only American East member the Broncos have played. Other members include the following: Albany, Binghamton, Boston, Hartford, Maine, UMBC, Stony Brook University and Vermont.

Harvard is a member of the Ivy League. The Harvard team features Palo Alto's own Jeremy Lin. Harvard will play at Seattle on Sat., Jan. 2 prior to coming to the Bay Area. The Harvard game could be the year's first sell-out. Fan should call the Bronco Ticket office today to get tickets at 408-554-4660 or visit the website at www.SantaClaraBroncos.com.

Listen

The UNH game will be broadcast at 1 pm via the Bronco Radio Network on both KDOW 1220 AM and Broncos All-Access on the web at www.SantaClaraBroncos.com. The pregame show will begin at 12:45 pm. Anthony Passarelli is in his third season as the play-by-play announcer.

In addition, Kerry Keating can be heard on KDOW 1220 AM on Sunday evenings from 8:30-9 pm in his radio spotlight on The Sports Ramble, hosted by Chetan Chaudhari. If you are out of the listening area Bronco fans, KDOW is streamed online live at www.1220kdow.com. Armed Forces Appreciation Day

Santa Clara Athletics is proud to host Armed Forces Appreciation Day on January 2nd vs. New Hampshire at 1 pm. As a way to say "thank you," all Armed Forces personnel (active or retired) will be given 2 FREE general admission tickets. Additional guests of the Armed Forces personnel will be given half-off tickets. See the Santa Clara website for more information.

Last Time Out

Led by a career-high 24 points for Ray Cowels off the bench and a season-high 16 points for Ben Dowdell, the Broncos were defeated by Wofford 80-72 in the consolation game of the Cable Car Classic. Along with Cowels and Dowdell, Marc Trasolini finished with 11 points and seven rebounds. Robert Smith added 11 points and six assists.

New Hampshire junior Alvin Abreu scored 24 points as the Wildcats defeated Colgate, 63-55, Dec. 30 at Lundholm Gymnasium. The Wildcats, who improved to 5-0 at Lundholm to match their best home start since the 1968-69 season and also extended their home winning streak to eight games, evened their record at 5-5. This marked the first time the `Cats have reached New Year's Day at .500 or better since they started the 1997-98 season at 5-5. UNH dropped the Raiders to 1-10 on the season by beating them for the third time in four contests and the first time at home since Jan. 5, 2002.

With the win, head coach Bill Herrion earned his 50th career victory at UNH and became just the second coach in program history to record 50 wins in less than five full seasons. Gerry Friel, UNH's all-time winningest coach, won 61 games in his first five years in Durham.

Starters

The Broncos used their ninth starting line-up of the season and their third different line-up in as many games vs. Wofford. It included: Robert Smith, Michael Santos, Troy Payne, Niyi Harrison and Ben Dowdell. They have had nine different players start in a game this season. They had used the same line-up four straight games prior to the Cable Car Classic.

The only players to have started in all 15 games this season are Robert Smith and Troy Payne. The Broncos have 13 players who have appeared in a game this season, but only seven players have played in all 15 games: Trasolini, Smith, Harrison, Cowels, Payne, Santos and Troy Alexander.

Leading

SCU has three players averaging double figures: Kevin Foster (19.8 ppg - out indefinitely), Marc Trasolini (13.9 ppg) and Robert Smith (11.1 ppg). They are led on the boards by Trasolini, who averages 6.8 rpg, and Troy Payne who grabs 6.6 rpg. Robert Smith leads the team with 3.0 apg. Payne has 7+ rebounds in eight games, including nine vs. Fresno State and a career-high 15 vs. Menlo. Trasolini leads the team with 1.7 bpg.

Traz

The UNH game last season was one filled with early-career achievements for Marc Trasolini. He scored a career-best 24 points at New Hampshire Jan. 4, 2009 when he went 7-8 from the field and hit 10 of 12 free throws in 27 minutes off the bench (then career bests). Following the UNH game, Trasolini started the last 17 games of the season.

Trasolini's 22 points vs. No. 21 UNLV on Dec. 5 was his second-best effort this season after he scored 23 points vs. Menlo on Nov. 16.

Trasolini has scored in double figures 12 times this season and has two double-doubles. In 15 games he has scored no fewer than seven points (vs. SJSU) and has scored 20+ three times this year after accomplishing that feat just once last year. He has scored 22 points in two of the last three games vs. UNLV and vs. Dominican. He tied his career high with eight field goals vs. Dominican, also hitting eight shots vs. USF on Feb. 21, 2009.

Cowels off the bench

Raymond Cowels scored 24 points off the bench vs. Wofford and for his efforts was named to the Cable Car Classic All-Tournament team. It was a career high for Cowels in the following categories: points (24), field goals made (8), three pointers made (5) and field goal percentage (.667). He tied his career high with three assists as well.

Cowels 24 points were the most for a Bronco off the bench since Marc Trasolini scored 24 vs. New Hampshire on Jan. 4, 2009. Looking for a better performance off the bench for a Bronco? Brandon Rohe scored 29 points on Dec. 27, 2002 in Santa Clara's 70-63 win over Mississippi Valley State. It was the most for a freshman since Kevin Foster scored 26 at LMU on Feb. 14, 2009 in Santa Clara's 69-64 win over the Lions in Los Angeles.

Cowels had started the last eight of nine games before coming off the bench vs. Wofford. Prior to the Wofford game, Cowels had been struggling, hitting five threes in the six previous games combined. The five threes also tied Kevin Foster's high from last season as well.

Double-Doubles

After John Bryant led the country with 28 double-doubles last year, finishing his career with 50 even, Marc Trasolini's two double-double were the only career double-doubles on the team until Niyi Harrison posted his first career double-double vs. Northeastern.

Harrison had a career-high 11 rebounds and scored 13 points vs. the Wildcats who ended up winning the Cable Car Classic. Eight of Harrison's rebounds were offensive and he was three of four from the free throw line.

Smith

In Santa Clara's game vs. SJSU on Dec. 23, freshman Robert Smith played a career-high 37 minutes, scoring 16 points with a career-high seven rebounds and five assists. Smith had a career-high six assists vs. Wofford.

Smith has come on strong recently as he has scored in double digits nine of the last 10 games. Smith was five of eight from the free throw line at Houston Baptist including two key free throws to help preserve the lead in the last seconds. Smith scored a career-high 17 points vs. Fresno State, was a career-high 6 of 8 from the free throw line in the win at UCSB and added 16 points vs. SJSU.

Smith was named to the Cousy Watch List as the top point guard in the country on Dec. 16. He is one of two point guards on the list from the WCC. The other is Gonzaga's Matt Bouldin.

Dowdell

Ben Dowdell started the first four games of the season before going down with a leg injury which caused him to miss the next four games.

Dowdell has started the past two games and made the best of it vs. Wofford on Dec. 30. He scored a second-high 14 points and grabbed four rebounds.

Dowdell averages 7.4 ppg and 6.6 rpg with 1.6 spg as well.

Stats

The Broncos failed to block a shot vs. SJSU. It was the first time since Jan. 15, 2009 at Gonzaga that they failed to block a shot in a game. In addition, SCU allowed SJSU to score 74 points and it was the first time since Nov. 25 vs. Northern Arizona that an opponent was able to score 70+ points on the Broncos.

Foster Out Indefinitely

Santa Clara's leading scorer Kevin Foster, the West Coast Conference's second-leading scorer this season, is out indefinitely with a right foot injury. Foster has a fracture of the fifth metatarsal that required surgery on Sat., Dec. 19.

Foster injured his foot in the final minutes of Santa Clara's 79-68 victory at UCSB on Dec. 1. Bronco head coach Kerry Keating said he will know more specifically how long Foster will be out after they talk to the doctor post-surgery. Keating added an injury like Foster's normally requires 2-3 months of recovery prior to any contact.

Foster was second in the league in scoring and led the WCC in steals and three-pointers made; and Foster was averaging 19.8 ppg, playing 31.5 mpg with 2.2 spg and 2.8 rpg. He led the Broncos in scoring in each of the six games he played this season, including a season-high 25 points in the 74-67 win over Fresno State on Nov. 28.

Foster was named to the preseason WCC all-conference team after being named the WCC Newcomer of the Year last season, breaking Steve Nash's single season record with 85 three pointers. He was also named a Freshman All-American, to the WCC All-Freshman team and All-WCC honorable mention. He averaged 14.7 ppg and 2.4 rpg last season, breaking Kurt Rambis' freshman scoring record with 486 points.

Younger

According to STATSHEET.com, Santa Clara is the sixth-youngest team in the country; and it is the youngest team in the WCC with an average of 1.87. Portland has the oldest team in the WCC with an average of 3.60 and it is the third-most experienced team in the country. The average is figured on the sum of minutes each player plays is multiplied by their class year (Freshmen=1, Sophomore=2, Junior=3 and Senior=4) and is divided by the total team minutes.

SCU was quite young last year as well. According to STATSHEET.COM (March 2, 2009), the Broncos had the 38th youngest team in the NCAA last year of the 342 Division I teams, which means 89% of the Division I teams had a more-experienced starting five than SCU.