SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Jarvis Pugh scored a game- and career-high 20 points helping Santa Clara men's basketball rebound from a cold-shooting first half to claim a 67-64 victory Friday in Herb Sendek's debut, which came during opening-day action at the 50th Annual Cable Car Classic.
Jared Brownridge scored 14 points and Kai Healy added 10, including eight in the second half, for the Broncos (1-0) who shot 48 percent from the field in the final 20 minutes after hitting only 30 percent in the first half of their season opener.
Jaleni Neely scored a team-high 18 points for the Lumberjacks (0-1) who received all but two of their points from the five starters. Mike Green had a double-double with 14 points and a game-high 13 rebounds, while Jordyn Martin also scored 14.
After three lead changes through the first 14 minutes of the second half, a corner 3-pointer from Healy tied the game at 52-all. Following a free from Northern Arizona's Ako Kaluna, Healy scored on a driving layup and the Broncos never trailed again.
Pugh hit seven of eight free throws in the final three minutes with his last one giving the Broncos a 65-59 lead with 29 seconds remaining. He was 8-for-9 in the game.
The Lumberjacks, who shot 34 percent in the game, were unable to get within one possession until Marcus DeBerry nailed a long 3-pointer to make it 67-64 with .6 seconds left.
Nate Kratch, who was saddled with foul trouble in the second half, had difficulty inbounding the ball on two tries. He second attempt went to Matt Hauser and the clock ran out.
Brownridge and Hauser, the primary ball handlers who combined to play all but two minutes, had a rough shooting night. Brownridge was 5-for-14 and Hauser 3 of 12, but they combined for nine assists and just three turnovers. Brownridge was 2 of 10 from behind the 3-point line and Hauser missed all seven attempts.
"We didn't shoot the ball very well, I thought the guys might have been pressing a little bit more out of the gate," Sendek said after his first game on the Santa Clara bench. "We still found a way to win the game. I thought our guys did a great job with poise and composure."
Northern Arizona scored the first seven points of the game and led by as many as 12 in the first half before the Broncos battle back.
Santa Clara scored 13 of the final 15 points of the opening half with a Brownridge 3-pointer with less than one minute remaining giving the Broncos a 28-26 lead.
But the Lumberjacks scored nine of the first 11 in the second half to build a 35-28 advantage.
"They fell behind double digits and fell behind in the second half after taking the lead," Sendek said. "On a night where we weren't playing our best or shooting the ball at all we found a way to hang in there and win the game."
The Broncos played without two regulars. Point guard KJ Feagin is out indefinitely after breaking a bone in his foot last month. Sophomore guard Evan Wardlow (hamstring) is also on the shelf. Junior forward Matt Hubbard played eight minutes against NAU after sitting out Saturday's exhibition win vs. Life Pacific. He's been recovering offseason ankle surgery.
In Friday's opening game, Tennessee State held off UC Davis, 78-64, after losing a big first-half lead.
The Broncos will face UC Davis at 6 p.m. Saturday with Tennessee State and NAU playing in the nightcap.
The Cable Car Classic concludes Sunday. UC Davis and Northern Arizona play at noon, followed by Santa Clara and Tennessee State.
|Audio||KLIV 1590 AM|
|Video||UC Davis | Tenn. St.|
|Live Stats||UC Davis | Tenn. St.|
Notes: With 14 points, Jared Brownridge (1,730) moved from fifth to fourth on the Santa Clara career-scoring list, passing Brian Jones (1,722/1996-01). Brownridge needs one more point to reach Harold Keeling (1981-85) in third and six to equal Kurt Rambis (1976-80) in second … after redshirting last season, Tony Lewis saw his first career action. The 6-foot-9 Lewis started at center and had two points in 13 minutes … three players nearly went the distance as Jarvis Pugh (38), Matt Hauser (39) and Jared Brownridge (39) each played at least 38 minutes … Pugh had career highs in points (20), made 3-pointers (3) and made free throws (8) … the Broncos had 13 assists and just eight turnovers while NAU produced only nine assists and posted 14 turnovers … Santa Clara scored 15 points off turnovers and only surrendered four… the Broncos have now won two of the three meetings with Northern Arizona. Santa Clara won 72-61 in the 1985 Cable Car Classic and lost 88-72 in the 2009 West Coast Classic.
Tickets: Season or single-game tickets, along with mini-plans, are available. Click here to purchase online or contact the ticket office weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. at (408) 554-4660 or [email protected]. Group discounts are also available through our ticket office sales and service consultants. During the Cable Car Classic, there will be one entry each day to Leavey Center. Season ticket holders may gain entry to the other game with their Santa Clara ticket. A single-game Santa Clara ticket is good for entry to one or both contests each day. Doors to Leavey Center, as well as its ticket office, are open one hour prior to the start of the first game.
Parking: Parking is $10 in the main campus parking structure, which is located on Palm Drive through the main entrance. The Leavey Center parking lot, located on Accolti Way off El Camino Real, is reserved for season-ticket holders. Click here for a campus map and parking restrictions.
Radio/Live Stream: Anthony Passarelli (play-by-play) and John Stege (color) will call the action for the Broncos on KLIV 1590 AM. The game can be heard over the air or online by clicking here. All Broncos home games and West Coast Conference contests (not on an ESPN platform) will also be streamed through TheW.tv (local blackout restrictions apply for games broadcast over the air).
About the Cable Car Classic
In 1967, the Cable Car Classic was founded by Art Santo Domingo, a former public relations director of the San Francisco Giants, and his long-time friend, the late Harry Jupiter, a sports writer for the San Francisco Examiner. The tournament has historically played around the Christmas holiday, though three years ago held on Thanksgiving weekend.
In 32 of the tournament's 49 years, the Classic has featured a team that received a bid to the NCAA Tournament just months later. For 10 years it has featured multiple teams who would later advance. The 1995 Cable Car Classic proved to be one of the strongest fields with all four teams advancing to the 1996 NCAA Tournament in March. Penn State won the Cable Car Classic with Georgia Tech, Santa Clara and Bradley also making the postseason. Georgia Tech won the ACC that year as well.
Those participating in past Cable Car Classics read like a who's who in college basketball history. From the Santa Clara teams of the 1960's and '70's that featured the talents of Bud Ogden, Dennis Awtrey and Kurt Rambis and the USF squads, led by Kevin Restani, Winford Boynes and Bill Cartwright to traditional basketball powers such as Dean Smith's North Carolina Tar Heels featuring Michael Jordan and James Worthy and the Ralph Sampson-led Virginia Cavaliers, to the '90s with Stephen Marbury of Georgia Tech to this century's teams, including one of the Air Force Academy's best-ever teams in 2006.
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