SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara picked up its first win over a Pac-12 team since 2006, riding a 25-point performance from Jared Brownridge in a 76-67 win over Washington State at the Leavey Center on Saturday night.
Brownridge hit 8 of 14 field goals and 5 of 10 triples to reach the 20-point plateau for a third consecutive game and the 17th time in his career. Santa Clara's last two wins vs. Pac-12 teams were both against Stanford, one at home and one away. Santa Clara won 62-46 at Stanford on Dec. 16, 2006 with Danny Pariseau scoring 16 points with nine rebounds. The Broncos' last home win vs. a Pac-12 team was Nov. 28, 2004 vs. the Cardinal again. They won 86-76 behind the 31 points and 11 boards of Travis Niesen.
Brandon Clark scored 19 points and now has 1,199 in his career to move ahead of Nathan Fast (1,182) into 24th place on the school's career list. Denzel Johnson scored 12 and Kai Healy added a career-high 10 points giving Santa Clara four double-figure scorers for the first time since March 6, 2014 against Pacific.
The Broncos shot 51.0 percent from the field (26 of 51), including 31.8 percent from beyond the arc (7 of 22). The Broncos added 70.8 percent from the foul line (17 of 24). They corralled 22 rebounds, 11 assists, 4 steals, 1 block and 6 turnovers.
Washington State shot 45.5 percent from the field (22 of 55), including 22.2 percent from deep (4 of 18). From the foul line, they shot 81.3 percent (13 of 16). They tallied 39 rebounds, 14 assists, 0 steals, 2 blocks and 13 turnovers.
Ike Iroegbu led the Cougars with 18 points and Josh Hawkinson had a double-double with 16 points and 16 rebounds.
After not playing a home game since Nov. 15, it took the Broncos some time to get reacquainted with the Leavey Center floor. Santa Clara missed its first five shots and didn't score for the first three and a half minutes.
Washington State capitalized on the Broncos' ineffectiveness with Ny Redding and Iroegbu each scoring down low for an early 4-0 Cougars lead before Brownridge got the Broncos on the board with the first of his five threes.
A driving layup by Clark started a 7-0 Broncos run that lifted them from a 10-6 deficit to their first lead of the night. Johnson capped the spree with a jumper from the elbow giving the Santa Clara a 13-10 lead at 13:02. The Broncos would never lose the lead after that.
Santa Clara had a response for the Cougars the entire game. Every Washington State run was countered by the Broncos who made eight of 10 free throws in the final 61 seconds to preserve their first home win over a Pac-12 team since an 86-76 win over Stanford on Nov. 28, 2004.
Clark hit a layup to open the second half giving the Broncos a 10-point lead at 40-30 and they would maintain the advantage most of the half.
Que Johnson and DaVonte Lacy keyed a 5-0 Washington State run to get the Cougars within 62-57 with 6:18 left and had an opportunity to get closer after Matt Hubbard missed a layup. However, an offensive foul on Junior Longrus turned the ball back over and the Broncos closed it out their first win over Washington State after going 0-4.
NOTES: Starters for the Broncos (career starts): Brandon Clark (46), Jarvis Pugh (7), Denzel Johnson (20), Jared Brownridge (42), Matt Hubbard (7) … Brownridge has made 21 straight free throws since starting the season 2 of 7 … Brownridge has scored in double figures 33 times in 42 career games … Clark has 54 double-figure scoring games in his career … Denzel Johnson reached the 400 career point mark (401) ... Santa Clara is now 1-4 vs. Washington State, including 1-1 in the Leavey Center.