Santa Clara will close out the regular season with its final two home games this week. The Broncos will host Pacific on Thurs., Feb. 26 at 7 pm and then Saint Mary's on Senior Night on Sat., Feb. 28 at 5 pm. The game with the Tigers will be televised live on Wtv.com with George Devine and Richie Schueler making the call. It will also be broadcast live on the Bronco website, SantaClaraBroncos.com, as part of the Bronco Radio Network. Anthony Passarelli is in his eighth season as the Broncos' play-by-play announcer.
SCU is 12-16 and 6-10 in the WCC. The Broncos snapped a six-game WCC losing streak with a 70-63 victory at LMU on Saturday as they led from start to finish. Jared Brownridge scored 28 points, including a six-of-seven performance from the three-point line in the first half. Denzel Johnson chipped in 13 and Brandon Clark and Jarvis Pugh both scored 10. Pugh led the team with nine rebounds and five assists as well.
Pacific is 11-17, including 3-13 in WCC play. The Tigers snapped an eight-game losing streak on Feb. 21 with a 79-77 OT victory over Portland. Four UOP players scored double figures, including David Taylor, who scored 18 points off the bench. The team's leading scorer, T.J. Wallace (13.2 ppg), scored four points in the come-from-behind victory. It featured nine lead changes and Portland led by as many as nine points in the second half (5:00).
SCU leads the all-time series 92-42 vs. Pacific, with SCU winning five of the last six contests. SCU has won eight of the last 13 contests. Pacific, along with SCU, was an original member of what is now the WCC, joining in 1952-53 to form the California Basketball Association. Pacific left the league in 1971, but accepted an invitation back to the WCC on July 1, 2013.
7 More To Be 33rd
Collecting 28 points at LMU, Jared Brownridge has now scored 993 career points (567 his freshman year and 426 this year). With seven points scored, he will be the 33rd Bronco in school history to score 1,000+. Brownridge will be the first true sophomore in Santa Clara history and just the third player in WCC history to do so his first two years (no redshirt season). The first was USF's Winford Boynes. He scored 1,074 his first two seasons. He collected a USF freshman record 542 points in 1975-76 and added 532 points in 1976-77. The second was the late Quintin Dailey, also of USF. Dons, Dailey scored 393 points his rookie year (1979-80) and 693 his sophomore year when he was named the WCC Player of the Year (1980-81).
Kevin Foster scored his 1,000th career point for the Broncos as a redshirt-sophomore on Jan. 22, 2011 vs. Portland (he played six games in 2009-10 before he broke his foot and was redshirted). Foster closed out his Bronco career with 2,423 career points, second only in the WCC to Hank Gather's 2,490 career points.
Brownridge will be the eighth Bronco to score his 1,000th career point under Kerry Keating. The last to do so: Brandon Clark joined the 1,000+ list last season when he scored 18 points at Pepperdine on March 1, 2014.
Our Senior Day Saturday
Santa Clara will honor all five seniors on Saturday night vs. Saint Mary's. With a 5:06 pm tip - the ceremony will happen early so be here! The seniors who will be recognized include the following: Dominic Romeo, Andrew Papenfus, Yannick Atanga, Denzel Johnson and Brandon Clark.
Prior to the Pepperdine game, the Broncos had started the same line-up 14 straight games But Jarvis Pugh stepped in for Matt Hubbard (who had been ill) in Southern California and responded well in both games. Pugh averaged 29.0 mpg during the two-game stretch, collecting 8.0 ppg, 6.0 rpg and 3.5 apg. He also averaged 1.0 spg and 1.0 bpg, including a career-high 10 points at LMU on Feb. 21. He was just a rebound away from his first career double-double when he scored 10 points and collected nine boards at LMU. Pugh has played in all 28 games this season, starting 12, and averages 18.1 mpg, 2.9 ppg and 3.3 rpg.
The LMU starting line-up included (career starts): Brandon Clark (65), Jared Brownridge (61) Denzel Johnson (39), Nate Kratch (21) and Pugh (12). It was the second straight game SCU has used the line-up. Clark has jumped 16 spots on the career points scored list this season and sits at No. 13 with 1,476 career points. He needs 96 points to pass No. 12 Kyle Bailey (1,571, 2001-05). Clark is tied for top honors in the WCC with 15 free throws made vs. Cal State Fullerton on Nov. 14. His 29 points vs. LMU on Jan. 22 are the third-highest total in WCC play this season.
Johnson's 29 threes this season are five more than the previous three seasons combined (24). Kratch has started 16 straight for the Broncos and leads the team with 4.4 rpg in 20.9 mpg. With 28 points at Pepperdine, Brownridge scored double figures in his 13th straight game and 50th career game.
Clark and Brownridge Lead
The Broncos returned the WCC's top-scoring back-court from last season in Brandon Clark and Jared Brownridge. Clark is averaging 15.5 ppg after scoring 16.9 ppg in 2013-14. Brownridge is averaging 15.2 ppg after leading the team with 17.2 ppg last year. Brownridge has scored in double figures 24 times year and Clark follows closely at 23 times. Clark has led the team in scoring 14 times, Brownridge 13, Matt Hubbard twice and Nate Kratch once. Denzel Johnson and Jalen Richard both had a team-high 13 points at Portland to finish out the game scoring leaders.
Clark is No. 5 on the career games played list with 129. His next obstacle: Kevin Foster sits at No. 4 with 133 games played. Clark has scored 20+ points in 10 games this year, including 21 at USF on Feb. 12. Starting 65 career games, Clark has scored double figures 69 times in his career, including 23 games with 20 or more points the past two years. Prior his junior year, Clark hadn't scored 20+ points in a college or high school game since he scored 29 in an AAU game in eighth grade. He has also scored 30 or more three times during his career, including a season-high 31 points vs. CSU-Fullerton on Nov. 14.
With 1,476 career points and 394 careers assists, Brandon Clark is the sixth player in school history to score 1,450+ points and dish out 390+ assists (joining Kevin Foster, Brian Jones, Steve Nash, Evan Roquemore and Kyle Bailey). With 24 more points he will be the 13th player to score 1,500 career points. He was the 15th Bronco to score 1,400 career points (Jan. 29) and the 20th Bronco to score 1,300 points (Jan. 13). Clark joined the 1,000+ list last season when he scored 18 points at Pepperdine on March 1, 2014.
Twice named the WCC Player of the Week this season (Nov. 17, Jan. 24), Clark is an 83.8 percent career free throw shooter. He is No. 3 on the career list; and the record is held by Steve Nash (86.1 percent, 1991-96) with Russ Vrankovich sitting at No. 2 (85.8 percent, 1961-64). Clark is No. 10 with 159 threes made; No. 9 in threes attempted with 494; and No. 10 with 394 assists.
Clark had his streak of 25 straight games in double figures ruined on Nov. 19 at Utah State when he scored nine. The streak dated back to Dec. 13, 2013. It was the longest streak for a Bronco since Travis Niesen scored double figures in 22 straight games (Feb. 5, 2005-Jan. 21, 2006).
With 28 points at LMU, Jared Brownridge has scored 20+ points 20 times in his career, including three straight games this season (vs. Rider, at SJSU and vs. Washington State). The 2014 WCC Newcomer of the Year, he has started every game he has played in the past two years (61 straight). He has scored double figures 50 times and has yet to be held scoreless. He scored 30+ three times last season but has yet to do it this season.
Brownridge has made 5+ threes 10 times in his career, including seven threes twice last year (vs. La Sierra, 12/14/13 and at Pepperdine, 3/1/14). He led the team with 95 three pointers a year ago and has hit 75 this season, giving him 170 in his career - good enough for No. 8 on the Bronco career list. Hitting a three in 56 of his 61 career games, Brownridge passed No. 8 Brian Jones (165, 1996-01) at LMU. He has hit 3+ threes in 31 games, 4+ in 21 games, 5+ in 10 games and 6+ in 5 games. His five career games with no threes include: 0-8 at Pepperdine 2-19-15; 0-5 vs. San Diego 1-13-15; 0-6 at BYU 2-16-14; 0-1 vs. Gonzaga 1-29-14; and 0-3 vs. Sacred Heart 12-18-13.
A preseason All-WCC pick this season, he set seven SCU freshman season records and three single game records last year. His 567 points scored last year shattered the freshman record and placed him at No. 2 all-time in points scored for a Bay Area freshman (list includes SCU, Stanford, Cal, Saint Mary's, USF and Pacific). He finished his freshman year with 24 points vs. Gonzaga in the WCC quarters, as the Broncos fell 77-75 on a last second layup by the Zags' David Stockton.
Brownridge works as an EyeBronco reporter for the SCU Media Relations office and hosts his own YouTube series: "Long Walks With Jared". With a couple cameras filming their conversation, Brownridge walks around the picturesque Mission campus chatting with his subject. He interviewed WCC Commissioner Lynn Holzman in January. Brownridge has also interviewed Santa Clara University President, Father Michael Engh, and two of his teammates: Dominic Romeo and Brandon Clark. Next up? Former Bronco head coach Carroll Williams. The Bronco head coach from 1970-92, Williams is the second-winningest coach in WCC history with 165 victories to his credit.
Romeo Named To Allstate NABC Good Works Team
As just one of five Division I men's players, forward Dominic Romeo was named to the Allstate NABC Good Works Team on Feb. 10. For the third year, this prestigious award pays tribute to college basketball players at all levels for their impressive commitment to giving back to their communities and positively impacting the lives of those around them. From improving environmental sustainability on college campuses to helping impoverished communities overseas, the service accomplishments of this year's team are some of the most impressive to date.
Romeo, who has played in five games this year, will attend the 2015 NABC Convention and the Final Four in Indianapolis, where the Good Works team will participate in a community project benefitting the host city. In his first season as a walk-on with SCU after graduating from Notre Dame in 2014, Romeo is working on his Master's degree in Theology. He graduated magna cum laude from UND in 2014 with a double major in Chinese and Political Science. He was a walk-on defensive end for the Fighting Irish football team (2012 season). As an undergrad he spent time volunteering in Honduras, Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda and the USA's Appalachian region. He also traveled to China three times and wrote his senior thesis on grassroots Democratic movements in rural China. Proficient in Mandarin Chinese, he was president of Notre Dame's Political Science Honors Society and founded Notre Dame's first-ever Chinese Language Club. His career goal is to be a medical doctor in a developing country.
After playing a couple years in UND's famed Book Store Basketball Tournament, in which he was named the MVP, Romeo decided to try his hand at college basketball. Passing on an opportunity to play four years prior, he sent emails to more than 150 schools. He narrowed it down to Cal, UOP and SCU. After he spent time with the Bronco coaches and players, he said his decision to come to SCU was easy. Attending a WCC school should have seemed like a no-brainer for Romeo. His sister Samantha goes to Gonzaga, his brother attends grad school at Saint Mary's and his father graduated from San Diego.
Hitting the books hard, Nate Kratch will graduate in June - finishing his undergrad degree in Psychology in three years. Kratch will begin classwork on a Master's degree in the field of Psychology this fall and has two years of eligibility remaining after redshirting his first year. His career goals include working in the field of Psychology or fitness training.
Santa Clara has the top four-year APR average in the WCC. Under Kerry Keating, SCU has had a 100 percent graduation rate the past seven years. The following are expected to graduate in June: Andrew Papenfus, Denzel Johnson, Brandon Clark, Yannick Atanga and Kratch. Atanga will have a double degree in French and political science and hopes to begin a master's degree if his sixth year's granted.