With Portland dominating the boards, the Pilots beat Santa Clara 78-61 in the Chiles Center. Santa Clara is 7-9 and 2-3 in the WCC. Portland is 11-5 and 2-2 in the WCC. Santa Clara travels to No. 6 Gonzaga for a 5 pm game on Sat., Jan. 10.
Santa Clara shot 44.0 percent from the field (22 of 50), including 35.3 percent from beyond the arc (6 of 17). The Broncos added 78.6 percent from the foul line (11 of 14). They collected 17 rebounds, 11 assists, six steals, two blocks and 11 turnovers.
Four Broncos finished in double figures for the first time since their 76-67 Washington State victory on Dec. 13, 2014. Jalen Richard led the Broncos with a season-best 13 points, adding four assists. Denzel Johnson collected 13 and Nate Kratch had 10 points, all in the second half. Jared Brownridge scored 10, including two threes. Jarvis Pugh led the Broncos with four rebounds.
Portland shot 53.2 percent from the field (25 of 47), including 53.3 percent from beyond the arc (8 of 15). The Pilots added 83.3 percent from the foul line (20 of 24). They collected 34 rebounds, 12 assists, six steals, three blocks and 14 turnovers.
Alec Wintering scored 26 points, including 9 of 9 from the free throw line, with four assists and four boards. Jason Todd and Gabe Taylor both had 12 off the bench. Thomas Van der Mars had 12 rebounds and eight points.
Portland opened the second half on a 7-2 run after leading 25-20 at the half. Kratch scored twice between a Richard basket inside, but UP kept pace and built an 11-point lead at 13:22, 44-33 Pilots.
Jared Brownridge made his first three at 12:58 and Kratch scored inside again at 11:46. Cutting the lead to six, Wintering scored his 20th point with a three ball, but Richard matched it from the corner.
Kratch scored under the basket twice in the next minute and a half. Bobby Sharp and Todd crushed back-to-back threes to give Portland its largest lead of the game at 6:27, 62-49.
Brownridge snapped the Pilots run with two free throws at 5:29 and then crushed his second three from the top of the key at 3:00. Todd made a pair of free throws to give Portland its largest lead of the night, 70-55, at 2:12.
D'Marques Tyson banked in a three with 33 seconds left in the game to give Portland a 78-61 victory.
Johnson opened the game by scoring inside on an inbound pass by Clark at 19:03. Portland then scored 11 straight points to take an 11-2 lead at 14:10, including five straight by Wintering to open the Pilots scoring.
Portland's leading scorer, Bailey, checked in at 15:34 after missing eight straight games for the Pilots.
Clark chipped in a five-footer and then hit a triple to cut the lead to four, 11-7 UP, at 13:32. Jason Todd scored a three to cut the Bronco run; and then Johnson added one in the lane at 9:53. UP scored a couple baskets to take an 18-9 lead at 7:10.
Brownridge and Clark scored back-to-back sets of free throws and Johnson made a three from the elbow to give SCU life. Jarvis Pugh and Richard hit back-to-back baskets inside and then Richard hit an NBA-three at 3:35 to cut the lead to two, 25-23 UP.
UP went on a 5-0 run over the next two minutes, but Clark's floater with 45 seconds was the final basket of the first half. UP led 30-25. Wintering had 11 in the first half and Clark added nine and Johnson seven.