After Santa Clara's Evan Roquemore hit two free throws to break a 59-year-old school record for career free throws, LMU went on an 11-0 run in the second half to take a 45-38 lead. SCU kept battling and pulled within two twice in the final 28.9 seconds, but had to put the Lions on the free throw line and fell 75-71 in Los Angeles on Thursday night.
Santa Clara is 12-18 and 5-12 in the WCC. LMU is 12-17 and 4-13 in the WCC.
Santa Clara shot 42.9 percent from the field (21 of 49), including 36.8 percent from beyond the arc (7 of 19). The Broncos shot 73.3 percent from the free throw line (22 of 30). They collected 30 rebounds, 10 assists, two blocks, seven steals and had season-high 20 turnovers.
Evan Roquemore scored 19 points with five assists to move to No. 8 on the WCC all-time assists list. He was seven of seven from the free throw line to top Ken Sears at No. 1 on the career free throws list (470, 1951-55). Brandon Clark scored 17 points on 8 of 8 shooting from the free throw line, but had a career-high seven turnovers. Jared Brownridge had 12 points with two threes to make it an even 80 threes on the season. Yannick Atanga had seven rebounds and nine points. Denzel Johnson scored seven points.
LMU shot 45.5 percent from the field (25 of 55), including 22.2 percent from beyond the arc (2 of 9). The Lions shot 82.1 percent from the free throw line (23 of 28). They collected 34 rebounds, six assists, two blocks, seven steals and had 15 turnovers.
Evan Payne scored 27 points on 11 of 17 shooting with five rebounds. Anthony Ireland scored 20 points with four assists. Gabe Levin added 10. Alex Osborne fouled out with nine points and 11 rebounds.
Opening the second half with a 34-30 lead. Payne tied it up with back-to-back baskets but Atanga scored on a miss three by Roquemore to put SCU back up by two, 36-34 at 18:30.
Roquemore knocked down a pair of free throws at 17:35 to break the career school set by Ken Sears (470, 1951-55) – which stood for 59 years! He also holds the career record for assists, set earlier this season.
LMU went on an 11-0 run to take a 45-38 lead at 14:14. Jerry Brown's drive to the basket stopped the run at 13:15 and then he added a free throw at 12:35.
LMU scored a couple more baskets to take 49-41 lead at 10:57, but SCU kept battling with Clark scoring a pair of free throws and Atanga scoring inside. Payne laid it in at 6:34 and the Lions led 57-49.
The Broncos then went on a 6-0 run to pull within three at 1:47. Roquemore's three, a free throw by Atanga and an inside basket by Clark made up the run. Payne scored his 25th point of the night on a put-back at 1:33.
Osborne fouled out at 1:24 to put Clark on the line. He made both to stay perfect at the line (7 of 7) and make the Lions lead three, 66-63. LMU scored four straight before Atanga dunked it with 48.9 seconds left.
Clark's runner in the lane pulled SCU within two with 29 seconds left, 71-69. Richard fouled Payne and he sank both with 28.4 seconds left, 73-69 Lions.
Roquemore scored a reverse lay-up with 15 seconds left and Ireland went to the line for a pair with 15.4 left.
The Broncos finished the first half on an 8-0 run to lead 34-30 at the break.
Brownridge opened the game with a three at 18:33. After Atanga scored inside at 17:56, LMU scored three straight baskets and a pair of free throws to take a 12-5 lead at 12:04.
The Broncos then ran off a 9-2 run to tie it up at 10:34. Brownridge scored the first Bronco field goal in more than six minutes and then added a second three 30 seconds later. Denzel Johnson crushed at three at 10:57 and then scored a free throw at 10:34 to tie it up 14-14.
Highlighted by a three by Ireland, LMU's 7-2 run put the Lions up 21-16 at 7:57. But Johnson's three from the corner at 7:14 cut the lead to two. After the Lions scored a couple baskets, Brownridge hit a pair of free throws. Brown missed his fourth straight free throw after that, but scored inside again at 3:47.
Clark scored a three on a sweet pass by Roquemore on his own steal to tie it up 26-26 at 3:21. Ireland added a pair of free throws and a field goal to put the Lions up 30-26 with 2:23.
The Broncos finished the first half on an 8-0 run the final 1:59, including a three by Roquemore and an and one by him as well.
GAME NOTES: Santa Clara started Jalen Richard, Brandon Clark, Jared Brownridge, John McArthur and Yannick Atanga … Roquemore's five assists moved him past Portland's Darwin Cook (573, 1976-80) to No. 8 all-time on the WCC career assists board with 577. He needs 11 to pass Gonzaga's Jeremy Pargo at No. 7 (589, 2005-09) … Brownridge needs two more points to break Kevin Foster's Bronco freshman record for points scored (486, 2008-09) ... Clark needs five points to become the 32nd Bronco to score 1,000 career points.