Basketball travels to San Diego State Thursday for First of Four games as part of West Coast Classic
Nov. 18, 2009
Santa Clara (2-0) travels to San Diego State for a 7 pm game on Thurs., Nov. 19 and despite San Diego State playing 170 games vs. WCC competition, it will be the first meeting between the Broncos and the Aztecs. San Diego State (1-1) fell 80-58 at Saint Mary's on Monday night as part of the ESPN College Hoops Tip-Off Marathon after defeating Division II UC San Diego 77-52 on Saturday. San Diego State ended Saint Mary's season last year with a 70-66 win and advanced to the NIT semi-finals where it fell 76-62 to Baylor.
Who is In: the West Coast Classic
Santa Clara will host the West Coast Classic the next two weeks. The Classic represents five different Division I conferences including the West Coast (Santa Clara), the Mountain West (San Diego State), Big Sky (Northern Arizona), Big West (Pacific) and WAC (Fresno State).
The West Coast Classic is considered one of the first of its kind because each school gets to host two home games. Santa Clara will host two games in the exempt event this season and can host an event like this once every five years.
"The opportunity to schedule up to 31 games in a season is difficult and by utilizing what is available to us by way of a multi-team event hopefully will provide all the schools that are involved more access to their own fan base," said Bronco head coach Kerry Keating. "We are glad we could make this come about and look forward to competing with the teams involved."
As part of the West Coast Classic, Santa Clara will play at San Diego State (Nov. 19) and at Pacific (Dec. 22) and then host Northern Arizona (Nov. 25) and Fresno State (Nov. 28).
In its first home game of the year on Monday night, Santa Clara defeated Menlo College 80-58. The 58 Santa Clara rebounds were the most for a Bronco team since Santa Clara collected 61 vs Cal State Stanislaus in a 97-53 win on Nov. 19, 2005. In addition, the 45 free throws attempted by the Broncos were the most Santa Clara has shot since it shot 47 vs. USF on Jan. 14, 1993. Marc Trasolini's 23 points and 12 rebounds led the Broncos as he collected his second career double-double and his first three-pointer on his first-ever attempt. Troy Payne added a career-high 15 rebounds with Robert Smith scoring in double-figures (13) for the first time.
Santa Clara, opening the season with a true road game for the first time since 2003, defeated CSU Bakersfield, 84-81, on Fri., Nov. 13 behind Kevin Foster's 21 points. Santa Clara had four players score in double figures: Foster (21), Troy Payne (15), Niyi Harrison (12) and Marc Trasolini (10). Head coach Kerry Keating is now 2-1 in season openers.
The Broncos, which features no seniors and nine underclassmen, are led by Foster, a preseason All-WCC honoree by the league's coaches, and Trasolini, a WCC All-Freshman team honoree last year. SCU returns two starters and seven letterwinners; and features six newcomers.
Santa Clara was 16-17 in Keating's second Bronco season last year. They posted a 7-7 record in the WCC, finishing in fourth place. The Broncos advanced to the WCC Tournament semi-finals before falling to eventual champion and then-No. 14 Gonzaga. Santa Clara was led last year by the WCC Player of the Year, John Bryant, who was later named to the AP All-American team (honorable mention) after leading the country in rebounds during the regular season as well as double-doubles. Bryant graduated last year as the school's career leader in rebounds and blocks and he finished sixth overall in points. In addition, he shattered the school record, finishing with exactly 50 double-doubles.
The SCU-San Diego State College game will be broadcast at 7 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 6:45 pm. Anthony Passarelli is in his third season as the Santa Clara men's basketball play-by-play announcer after six seasons of handling those duties for SCU women's basketball.
Marc Trasolini scored 20+ once last year when he scored 24 points, going 10 of 12 from free throw line, and grabbed 10 rebound at New Hampshire. It was his lone double-double of the year. Two games into this season, Traz collected his second career double-double with 23 points and 12 rebounds vs. Menlo. After John Bryant led the country with 28 double-doubles last year, finishing his career with 50 even, Trasolini's two double-double are the only career double-doubles on the current Bronco roster.
Microwave Heatin Up
Kevin Foster was nicknamed 'Microwave' by his father during his youth the Detroit Piston's Vinnie Johnson. Johnson earned the nickname 'the Microwave' from Boston Celtics guard Danny Ainge for his ability to score many points in a short period of time, heating up the offense.
Foster scored 20+ points 11 times last year, including five of the last eight games of the season. He picked up right where he left off at CSU Bakersfield, scoring 21, on Nov. 13, but it sure didn't look like that would happen at the half!
In the first half vs. the Roadrunners Foster was 0-10 from the field, including 0-4 from beyond the arc. It was the first time since Dec. 3, 2008 that Foster didn't score a single point in the first half. In that game at San Jose State, Foster was 0-4 from the field, including 0-3 from the three-point line in 13 minutes. Foster ended that game scoring four points, including 1-7 from the field and 0-3 from beyond the arc. The Broncos did win the game 59-56.
The 12 games Foster has hit 20+ in during his career:
Opponent/Date Points (3s made)
vs. Arizona/Nov. 25, 2008 21 (5)
vs. Belmont/Dec. 29, 2008 24 (3)
at Harvard/Jan. 2, 2009 20 (4)
at Saint Mary's/Jan. 9, 2009 31 (5)
at Portland/Jan. 17, 2009 20 (3)
vs. LMU/Jan. 29, 2009 20 (3)
vs. Saint Mary's/Feb. 7, 2009 26 (4)
at LMU/Feb. 14, 2009 26 (5)
at USF/Feb. 21, 2009 20 (2)
vs. Gonzaga/Feb. 26, 2009 20 (3)
vs. San Diego/March 7, 2009 21 (4)
at CSUB/Nov. 13, 2009 21 (3)
Foster scored 19 vs. Menlo - just one point off his 13th game of 20+. He has scored 15+ points in 19 of 33 career games.
The Broncos return seven players from their 2008-09 squad. Santa Clara returns the following this year:
Stat Number Percent
Minutes 3269 of 6700 48.8%
Rebounds 496 of 1163 42.6%
Assists 216 of 421 51.3%
Points 915 of 2164 42.3%
SCU grabbed a 16-year high 58 rebounds vs. Menlo Nov. 16.
The Broncos outrebounded their opponent in 23 of 33 games last season. In those 23 games, Santa Clara was 15-8. All eight losses were decided by eight points or less with two being decided by one point each. In five of the eight, the opponent shot better than the Broncos at the free throw line and all eight had the same or fewer turnovers than the Broncos. The Broncos averaged 18.8 turnovers in those eight contests and shot 67.4% from the free throw line. In the same eight games, opponents shot 72.2% from the free throw line and averaged 11 turnovers.
The Broncos scored 49 of its 84 points in the second half on Nov. 13 at CSU Bakersfield and then 44 of its 79 points in the second half vs. Menlo on Nov. 16.
Last season, the Broncos never posted 40+ in the first half however the Broncos did score 40+ in the second half of seven games.