Broncos Down LMU on Senior Night
Kevin Foster set the career record for starts and Raymond Cowels III and Marc Trasolini set the career record for games played. Foster also moved to a tie for No. 9 all-time in NCAA Division I history with 401 career threes with his five threes.
Santa Clara is 21-9 and 9-6 in the WCC. LMU is 8-21 and 1-14 in the WCC. The 21 wins are the second-best total under head coach Kerry Keating (24 in 2011) and its just the 13th time in SCU's 106 year history it has won 21+.
Trasolini finished the game with a game-high 26 points, hitting 9 of 12 field goals and 7 of 10 from the free throw line. He also collected eight rebounds. Foster scored 17, hitting 5 of 6 from beyond the arc. He also dished out eight assists and grabbed five steals. Cowels III scored 12 including two threes. Evan Roquemore scored 11 on 4 of 6 shooting with two assists. Yannick Atanga had seven rebounds.
Santa Clara shot 50.9 percent from the field (28 of 55), including 42.9 percent from beyond the arc. The Broncos shot 77.8 percent from the free throw line (4 of 18). They collected 31rebounds, 19 assists, 10 steals, five blocks and had 13 turnovers.
LMU shot 35.2 percent from the field (19 of 54), including 28.6 percent from beyond the arc.The Lions shot 64 percent from the free throw line (16 of 25). They collected 37 rebounds,10 assists, two steals, one blocks and had 17 turnovers.
Anthony Ireland led the Lions with 23 points, including 6 of 9 from the free throw line. Alex Osborne scored 15 points with nine rebounds. Ashley Hamilton had 10 rebounds and eight points.
After winning the tip, Trasolini hit a mid-range jumper to open the game. Hamilton cut the Bronco lead to one after he converted one of two from the charity stripe. On the next Lion possession, Niyi Harrison came up with a block that allowed Cowels III to make an easy layup.
After Ireland answered with a layup, Cowels III knocked down a triple to make the Santa Clara lead 7-3. Alex Osborne dunked a ball and then the Broncos responded with a towering dunk from Yannick Atanga; Osborne responded with two more points in the paint. Holding a 9-7 lead, Foster hit a three-pointer from the top of the arc. At the first media time, the Broncos held a 12-7 advantage.
Following the timeout, Foster hit his second from downtown to extend Santa Clara's lead to 15-7. John McArthur hit a jumper from just outside of the key and after a defensive stop, Roquemore drove the lane and pulled up to add to make the lead 12. Osborne continued to carry the LMU offense, adding a putback at 12:07.
At 10:52, Trasolini converted on an and-one opportunity that put Santa Clara up 22-9. On the Broncos' next possession, Brandon Clark found Trasolini inside for an easy two. Goodwin Okonji and Osborne hit two shots inside to cut the Broncos' lead to 11, 23-13.Okonji knocked down two free throws. Entering the second media timeout, Santa Clara held a 25-15 advantage.
Ireland hit two free throws following the timeout that B. Clark countered with a layup. On the next Bronco possession, Roquemore sunk a triple. Ireland drove the lane and hit a tough jumper that kept the contest within 10 points. Okonji hit two more from the charity stripe. Trasolini hit a 15-footer that gave Santa Clara a 10-point cushion. Hamilton responded for LMU with two points in the paint. At 4:15, Denzel Johnson drove the lane, spun, and then hit a tough jumper. After the Broncos forced a turnover, Foster struck again from downtown to extend Santa Clara's lead to 36-23.
With three minutes left in the half, B. Clark found Cowels III on an inbound pass that Cowels III was able to turn into two quick points. On the next SCU possession, Trasolini added two points down low. B. Clark added one free throw and the Broncos were up by 18 points - Santa Clara's largest lead to that point. Ireland hit one of two from the free throw line before LMU called timeout with 46 seconds left. At the half, Santa Clara led LMU 41-24.
In the first half Santa Clara shot 60.7 percent from the field (17 of 28), including 62.5 percent from beyond the arc (5 of 8). The Broncos shot 66.7 percent from the free throw line (2 of 3). They collected 18 rebounds, 13 assists, five steals, four blocks and had eight turnovers. Trasolini scored 11 and was 5 of 7 from the field with three rebounds. Harrison collected four rebounds and Atanga had five. Foster had nine and Cowels III had seven.
LMU shot 27.6 percent from the field (8 of 29), including zero percent from beyond the arc (0 of 2). The Lions shot 61.5 percent from the free throw line (8 of 13). They collected 17 rebounds, five assists, one steal and had seven turnovers. Osborne scored eight for the Lions and Hamilton collected a team-high four rebounds.
Ireland started the second half with a triple that put the score at 41-27. Foster responded with a floater in the lane. On the defensive end, Foster drew a charge to give the Broncos possession. Trasolini and Osborne traded points in the paint before Foster sunk a three-pointer, his fourth of the game, to give the Broncos a 48-29 advantage.
Leading 49-31 with 12:37 remaining, Roquemore added two free throws. Hamilton answered with a triple. However, Roquemore drove the lane and hit a floater.
Okonji sunk two from the charity stripe at 11:46. Ireland hit a layup that cut Santa Clara's lead to 15 before Trasolini responded with a two-handed dunk. The fifth-year senior added two free throws on the Broncos' next possession to give SCU a 57-38 lead. Trasolini and Roquemore traded layups with Ireland to give Santa Clara a 61-42 lead. Trasolini's bucket pushed him to No. 10 all-time in scoring, passing Kyle Bailey (1,571, 2001-05).
Trasolini hit two free throws at 8:11 that Santa Clara a 21-point advantage. Cowels III and Trasolini both sunk triples to put SCU up by 25 points. Cowels III and Ireland traded free throws. Foster hit his fifth three-pointer of the night at 5:06.
With four minutes left in the game, Santa Clara had built a 75-48 lead. Coach Keating would be afforded the opportunity to take each senior out one-by-one to be acknowledged one-by-by as the Broncos would go on to post a 79-56 victory.
SCU's six seniors, including manager Kyle Hypes, were honored pregame. Head coach Kerry Keating started seniors Kyle Perricone, Kevin Foster, Marc Trasolini, Niyi Harrison and Raymond Cowels III in their final regular season home game in the Leavey Center.
Santa Clara used a 10-0 run with five different players scoring in 1:38 late in the first half to build its biggest lead of the first half at 41-23 with 2:08 left.
The Broncos have won their last eight games when leading at halftime with their last loss coming on Jan. 10 at LMU. SCU wasted a 9-point lead at the break in that game.
Kevin Foster made his fourth 3-pointer of the game with 17:04 remaining in the second half to become the 11th player in NCAA Division I history with 400 career made 3's. He moved past Gerry McNamara (finished in 2006) when he scored his fifth three of the game at 5:06 to move to No. 9 all-time in NCAA Division I history and sits tied with Doug Day of Radford, who finished in 1993 with 401 threes. Foster's second 3-point attempt of the game at 15:19 of the first half was the 1,100th of his career. He is No. 6 all-time in NCAA Division I history with 1,104.
Kevin Foster started his 117th career game, a new Bronco school record. He topped Brian Jones who started 116 games from 1996-01.
The win was the eighth for SCU head coach Kerry Keating against LMU tying with USF for the most against any opponent.
Marc Trasolini and Raymond Cowels III broke the school record for career games played with129. They topped their former teammate Ben Dowdell, who played in 128 games from 2007-11. Trasolini moved to No. 10 all-time in points scored.
Santa Clara never trailed in the game and has gone nearly two full games playing with a lead. SCU last trailed on Feb. 23 at Portland for a total of 13 seconds and grabbed the lead over the Pilots 49 seconds into the game.
Raymond Cowels III's father, Raymond Cowels Jr., performed the national anthem on the saxaphone (it was amazing!!).
Santa Clara shot a season-best 60.7 percent in the first half (17 of 28) and ended the game at 50.9 (28-of-55).
LMU's Anthony Ireland, the WCC's second-leading scorer, poured in 18 in the second half to reach 23 for the game eclipsing his season average of 20.4.
The Broncos had at least four players in double figures for the first time since the Saint Mary's game Feb. 7, 2013.
Santa Clara travels to Saint Mary's Sat., March 2 for a 7 pm match up. If Santa Clara wins and BYU loses at LMU Santa Clara will clinch third place.