Hot-Shooting Second Half Helps Men’s Basketball Pull Away from Pepperdine

Hot-Shooting Second Half Helps Men’s Basketball Pull Away from Pepperdine

Ticket Information | Audio: Feagin Halftime Interview

Audio: Sendek Postgame Interview | Audio: Brownridge Postgame Interview

MALIBU, Calif.Jared Brownridge scored 30 points, including 21 in the second half, and Matt Hauser added 16 to enable Santa Clara men's basketball to pull away from Pepperdine and claim a 75-61 road victory in Saturday's matchup between the West Coast Conference teams.

KJ Feagin (11) and Nate Kratch (10) also reached double figures in scoring for the Broncos (10-9, 4-2) who erupted for 50 points on 60 percent shooting from field, including 8-for-13 from behind the 3-point line, in the second half to secure their fourth win in the last five games.

Lamond Murray Jr. scored a game-high 32 points on 12 of 17 shooting from the floor, but Chris Reyes (11) was the only other player in double figures for Pepperdine (5-13, 1-4), which has dropped 12 of its last 13 contests.

The Broncos pushed a one-point halftime lead to as many as 14, but the Waves reduced it to single digits three times in the final 14 minutes.

Murray's 3-pointer cut the deficit to 58-49 with 7:50 left in the game, but the lead grew to 17 when Brownridge connected on a 3-pointer less than four minutes later. He was 7-for-13 from behind the 3-point line in the game helping the Broncos matched their season high with 14 3-pointers.

"Jared really got going especially in the second half," Santa Clara head coach Herb Sendek said. "When he's playing like that obviously it makes a big difference for our team."

The Waves connected on just one field goal in the final 7:49 and shot 41 percent in the game.

Hauser was 7-for-11 from the floor and scored seven of the team's first 14 points of the second half. He had seven points during an 11-0 run shortly after halftime and five assists in the game.

Emmanuel Ndumanya had a season-high 11 rebounds for Santa Clara, which held a 36-28 edge on the glass. Kratch had eight rebounds and played all 40 minutes for the third-straight game.

The Broncos swept this week's Southern California road swing after downing San Diego 59-57 on Thursday. Santa Clara entered the week with only one victory away from home in seven attempts and with BYU's loss to San Diego Saturday night moved into a tie for third place with the Cougars in the WCC standings.

"It's good to get out of here with a win," Sendek said. "I told our guys we did a lot of good things that we can continue build on."

Brownridge scored 30 or more points for the 11th time in his career to extend his own school record, with two of those occurrences in Firestone Fieldhouse. He scored a school freshman-record 38 points at Pepperdine on March 1, 2014, leading the Broncos to an 86-78 victory.

The senior also moved to eighth on the WCC all-time scoring list. He now has 2,056 points, passing Johnny Dee of San Diego (2011-15), who had 2,046.

The Waves battled back in the first half after the Broncos took an early lead.

Murray Jr. keyed a 17-3 run that flipped a seven-point deficit into a 22-15 lead with less than eight minutes remaining in the first half. The league's third-leading scorer started the rally, which spanned seven minutes, with a 3-pointer and ended it by tallying the final five points.

But from there the Waves went cold, missing their final eight field-goal attempts of the half.

Brownridge scored five of the final seven points of the half with his 3-pointer with 1:45 on the clock enabling the Broncos to regain the lead at 25-24. They never trailed the remainder of the game.

Santa Clara scored nine of their first half points on second chance opportunities with Ndumanya leading the way by collecting eight rebounds, including three on the offensive end.

Santa Clara opens a four-game homestand Thursday when undefeated and fifth-ranked Gonzaga visits Leavey Center.

Notes: This evening's game was the 133rd meeting in a series that began in 1956. The Broncos now hold a 74-59 lead. The teams split the previous 10 games in the series … the Broncos held the rebounding edge (36-28) for just the fifth time this season, improving to 4-1 in those games. They entered with the lowest rebounding margin (-3.4) per game … the Broncos equaled a season best by connecting on 60 percent (18 of 30) shooting from the field in the second half. They shot 60 percent (15 of 25) in the final 20 minutes vs. Sacred Heart (Nov. 21) … the 50-point outburst in the final 20 minutes matched a one half season high (also second half vs. Northern Colorado, Nov. 19) … Santa Clara improved to 9-2 when scoring 65 or more points. The Broncos also now have the same record when connecting on at least 43 percent from the floor. They hit 48 percent of their shots against Pepperdine … Hauser (16) scored in double figures for the 10th time this season, including seven in his last 10 games. He also had five assists, his ninth game this season posting at least that many … Brownridge (seven) nailed at least seven 3-pointers for the ninth time in his career, extending his own school record. Kevin Foster (2008-13) is second with five. He also became the all-time leader in 3-pointers made during WCC action. Brownridge now has 171 in league games, passing Jeff Fryer of LMU (1987-90) who posted 166 … Brownridge's point total (21) in the final 20 minutes was the fourth-highest one-half output of his career. Earlier this year, he had 28 in the second half vs. Valparaiso (Nov. 25). Last season, he posted 22 in second half against both Arizona (Nov. 25) and Portland (Jan. 30) … Brownridge has scored in double figures in 37 of the last 41 games and now has at least 20 points in 22 of those contests … Feagin matched his season high with seven assists (also vs. Portland, Jan. 5). He also had no turnovers in 29 minutes of action.

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