Spokane, WA – Holding a lead the first 19:41 of the game, Santa Clara fell 82-60 at No. 25 Gonzaga on Saturday in its second straight road game to start 2012 WCC play. Santa Clara is 8-7 and 0-2 in the WCC and Gonzaga is 13-2 and 3-0. Santa Clara hosts its first WCC game this season when San Diego visits on Thurs., Jan. 12 at 7 pm and then the Broncos travel to Provo, Utah when they visit BYU on Sat., Jan. 14 at 5 pm Pacific on ESPNU. Gonzaga finishes a three-game home stretch to open WCC play and are now 102-6 in WCC play at home since 1996-97.
"We had to make a quick turnaround with our late game at Portland and we knew we needed to make a quick start without their students here and establish ourselves. We played well in the first half. We had a bit of a lapse in our offense in the second half for that stretch and that hurt us," said Bronco head coach Kerry Keating. "It's another lesson learned without Marc Trasolini and a young team, but we will continue to grow."
Santa Clara shot 38.3 percent from the field (23 of 60), including 31.6 percent from beyond the arc (6 of 19). They had 11 turnovers and shot 100.0 percent from the free throw line (8 of 8). They collected 26 rebounds, 13 assists, six steals and three blocks.
Individually Santa Clara was led by Raymond Cowels III who scored three threes for 13 points on the day, also leading the team with four rebounds. Brandon Clark scored 12. Evan Roquemore scored eight points and added nine assists. Kevin Foster finished with nine points and zero threes. It was his first game out of double figures since just eight at Pepperdine on Jan. 27, 2011. It was his first game without a three (0-4) since he went 0-10 at USF on Feb. 5, 2011.
"Gonzaga is a good team and they won't give you easy looks," said Cowels III. "Coming into the game I knew we had great guards and post players and I knew we had to get shots off quick."
Gonzaga shot 54.5 percent from the field (30 of 55), including 35.3 percent from beyond the arc (6 of 17). They had 12 turnovers and shot 76.2 percent from the free throw line (16 of 21). They collected 39 rebounds, 17 assists, five steals and seven blocks.
Individually Gonzaga was led by Sam Dower's 17 points off the bench. He added six rebounds. Gary Bell, Jr. scored 15, Elias Harris 12 and Kevin Pangos 10. Robert Sacre collected a game-high eight rebounds and Pangos added five assists.
Cowels III started things off quickly for the Broncos with a put-back at 19:07 and then a pair of threes from the corner at 18:24 and then the top of the key at 17:24.
Harrison scored inside at 16:20 and Bell put the Zags on the board with his first basket at 15:22 and then Harris hit a floater inside at 14:21. B. Clark scored inside at 13:00 and the Broncos led 12-4.
Harris missed badly on a pair of free throws, but Dower scored inside to answer. Foster hit a jumper at 13:15 and Dower scored a pair of free throws at 13:07.
Foster was fouled by Bell at 12:51 and converted both to put the Broncos up 16-8. During that, the Zags went on a 8-2 run when Keating called timeout at 9:18. Cowels stopped the run with a floater from the side, 18-14 Broncos at 9:00.
Cowels III looked to block a clean ball vs. a 6-9 Dower, but was whistled for the foul and Dower sank his fourth free of the game at 8:07.
Garrett blocked Sacre's shot and then grabbed the ball in the pile. J. Clarke hit a three, but the Zags answered, 21-19 Broncos at 7:10.
Roquemore crushed a wide-out three at put the Broncos up 24-19 at 5:11. Harris hit a pair from the charity stripe at 7:10.
Foster scored a floater at 4:23. Pangos scored his first basket at 3:40, 26-23 Broncos. Dower's scored on a reverse at 2:18. After turnovers by both teams, Dower gave the Zags their first lead with 41 seconds left in the half with a three, 28-26. The Broncos didn't score the last 4:23 of the half.
In the first half Santa Clara shot 34.7percent from the field (10 of 28), including 40.0 percent from beyond the arc (4 of 10). They had seven turnovers and shot 100.0 percent from the free throw line (2 of 2). They collected 18 rebounds, five assists, three steals and two blocks.
Individually Santa Clara was led by Cowels III with 10 points, including an 8-0 of his own to start the game. Three Broncos had three rebounds each and Roquemore scored four assists and two steals.
Gonzaga shot 38.5 percent from the field (10 of 26), including 22.2 percent from beyond the arc (2 of 9). They had five turnovers and shot 75.0 percent from the free throw line (6 of 8). They collected 17 rebounds, six assists, three steals and three blocks.
Individually Gonzaga was led by Sam Dower's 11 points off the bench. Harris collected six rebounds.
Sacre hit the free throw line at 19:43 and hit both, 30-26 Zags. McArthur hit a bucket from five out at 19:25.
Foster was fouled by Hart shooting a three and he hit all three to give the Broncos a 31-30 lead at 18:51.
The Zags went on an 18-0 run before Harrison dunked it at 12:54. It was the Broncos first basket in seven minutes. McArthur added a basket at 11:45, 50-35 Zags.
The Zags went on another run, 6-0, before Foster stripped Carter and B. Clark knocked down a three at 9:24. He scored a floater at 9:19, 56-40 Zags.
The Zags went on a 9-2 run before B. Clark stepped to the line after being fouled by David Stockton and hit both, 65-43 Zags at 6:11. GU hit a floater and then McArthur hit a bank shot for two and scored another bucket on a dandy pass from Roquemore at 5:22, 67-48 Zags.
The Zags took a 2-point lead on a pair of Pangos free throws at 5:15. Roquemore scored at 3:52.
Cowels III scored his third three of the day at 3:15.