Gaels knock off Gonzaga in WCC showcase, 83-62

640546.jpg

Gaels knock off Gonzaga in WCC showcase, 83-62

BOX SCORE

MORAGA -- Matthew Dellavadova hit five 3-pointers on the way to 26 points and also dished out six assists, and Saint Mary's pulled off a rare rout of No. 21 Gonzaga with an 83-62 win Thursday night in a matchup of the West Coast Conference's fiercest rivals.Brad Waldow added 17 points and 10 rebounds and Stephen Holt had 13 points and six assists for the Gaels (16-2, 5-0) at a rocking McKeon Pavilion, where a standing-room only crowd packed the arena for a nationally televised showdown that's always the biggest draw of the season here. Students stormed the court after the final buzzer.Elias Harris had 17 points and 11 rebounds and Kevin Pangos scored 12 for the Bulldogs (13-3, 3-1), who had their eight-game winning streak snapped. Gonzaga lost in early December to Illinois and Michigan State, marking another tough nonconference schedule under coach Mark Few.

Clint Steindel knocked down a 3 with 15:25 left that put Saint Mary's ahead 48-37 and the Gaels made key stops down the stretch to extend the lead. They won their sixth straight since losing to now-No. 4 Baylor 72-59 on Dec. 22.Dellavedova hit key 3s with 10:05 left, at the 5:22 mark and again with 3:43 remaining to keep his team in control. He had a lay-in with 2:52 to go and jumped in the passing lanes on defense to cause havoc for the Zags.The gutsy Australian guard - who had a career-high 27 points in Monday's win over San Francisco - sat down to a rousing ovation with 1:29 left. He finished 10 for 16 from the field - 5 of 10 from long range - and scored 15 of his points in the first half, including six during an 8-0 spurt to end the half and give the Gaels a 37-29 lead at the break.Saint Mary's held Gonzaga's big men in check. Gaels center and leading scorer Rob Jones did his part on both ends despite getting just two points to go with 11 rebounds and eight assists.The 7-foot Robert Sacre, Gonzaga's third-leading scorer at 11.5 points per game, missed all four of his field goal tries in the first half and began the final 20 minutes on the bench with Sam Dower in the game instead. Sacre checked in with 15:23 to play and wound up with four points on 1-for-7 shooting and three rebounds.This was a rare lopsided result in one of the nation's more underrated rivalries.Gonzaga had won the last two meetings overall and three in a row on the Gaels' home court despite raucous sellout crowds and fans standing in the corners and lining both baselines. The Zags also captured the West Coast Conference tournament crown last season with a 75-63 victory to secure the league's automatic NCAA tournament bid.Saint Mary's reached the NCAA tournament regional semifinals in 2010, then was stunned by Kent State 71-70 in the first round of last year's NIT.Gonzaga trailed at halftime for the first time since being down one point at the break before losing 74-67 at home to Michigan State on Dec. 10.These teams have combined to win every WCC regular-season title since 2001. The perennial favorite Zags were picked by the WCC coaches to win a 12th consecutive crown, with Saint Mary's at No. 2.The Gaels and Zags are two of eight teams in Division I - along with WCC newcomer BYU - to win at least 25 games in each of the last four seasons.Several former stars from both schools were in attendance - ex-Saint Mary's center Omar Samhan and David Pendergraft of Gonzaga. Matt Santangelo, another former Zags great, worked the game for TV.Gonzaga, the conference's most dominant team for more than a decade, pulled off an 89-85 overtime victory the Gaels' home court last season. That kept Saint Mary's from winning its first outright regular-season WCC championship since 1989.The Zags also won 89-82 at McKeon in 2010.The Associated Press contributed to this report

Stanford tops North Carolina on PKs, advances to NCAA final

stanford-mens-soccer.jpg
USATSI

Stanford tops North Carolina on PKs, advances to NCAA final

HOUSTON — For the second straight season, Stanford found itself depending on penalty kicks to advance to the College Cup final.

Like last season, the Cardinal came out on top. After each team converted its first nine attempts in the tiebreaker, Amir Bashti made it 10-for-10 for Stanford. Tar Heels defender Alex Comsia then sent his try over the crossbar to end it, giving Stanford a 10-9 win.

"They had just as many good chances as us, and it could have been a 1-0 game either way," Stanford coach Jeremy Gunn said.

Stanford (14-3-5) will face Wake Forest in the College Cup final on Sunday in search of its second straight national championship.

"It's not his fault. We could have done things in the game to have his back," North Carolina defender Colton Storm said of Comsia's miss. "It could have been any of us."

"It's the nature of the game," North Carolina coach Carlos Somoano said. "Sometimes they go in, sometimes they don't. Sometimes there's moments you seize the moments, and sometimes it runs away from you."

North Carolina (14-3-4) had the two best chances of the game. Late in the second half, forward Alan Winn was denied by goalkeeper Andrew Epstein, who made a nice save with his legs.

Later, Epstein made the best save of the match in the final seconds of the second overtime on a shot from forward Tucker Hume. After gaining possession in the right side of the 18-yard box, Hume unleashed a shot that Epstein deflected wide with his legs.

"He made the plays to keep the game at 0, and he deserves credit," Somoano said.

After a flurry of corner kicks and a free kick in an attacking area, Stanford had the best opportunity to score in the first overtime on a header from Drew Skundrich, but he put if over goalkeeper James Pyle, who had six saves. Foster Langsdorf, the Stanford goal leader who scored in the team's first three tournament games and has 15 on the season, had three shots and two on goal but was unable to break the deadlock before the game went to penalty kicks.

"Any result like that is going to be tough to swallow," Storm said. "Stanford's a really good team. We each had our chances. National semifinal, it's going to be tough to swallow no matter what."

While Epstein was unable to stop any of North Carolina's penalties in the shootout, his saves late in the game enabled Stanford to continue its quest for a repeat.

"Andy's never really attracted much attention, but when you're his coach you appreciate him," Gunn said. "You can depend on him."

Stanford has won 15 of its last 18 games after starting the season with three ties and a loss. The Cardinal have yet to concede a goal through four tournament games, while North Carolina's season ends after a third consecutive tournament shutout.

After winning the first national championship in program history last season, Gunn praised his team for continuing to push forward this season.

"It's incredible," Gunn said. "You've always got to be optimistic. There's no point in being anything else. We started the year so well in January. I thought, 'These players are so hungry.'"

Seton Hall slips past Cal basketball at Pearl Harbor Invitational

jabari-seton-hall.jpg
AP

Seton Hall slips past Cal basketball at Pearl Harbor Invitational

HONOLULU Jabari Bird nearly notched his first collegiate double-double with 22 points and a career-high nine rebounds, but just as his effort fell short, so did California men's basketball's efforts against Seton Hall. The Pirates slipped past the Golden Bears, 60-57, at the Pearl Harbor Invitational to hand Cal its second loss of the season. The Bears are now 7-2.

Seton Hall's Angel Delgado scored 16 points and grabbed 12 rebounds.

Delgado, a 6-foot-10, 240-pound forward, made 6 of 9 shots from the field in a game-high 36 minutes played.

Desi Rodriguez scored 15 points and Khadeen Carrington had 14 points with four assists for the Pirates (7-2).

Carrington tied it at 45 with just under 12 minutes to play on a 3-pointer from the right wing, which ignited a 7-0 Seton Hall run. California never regained the lead.

Ivan Rabb's putback pulled the Golden Bears (7-2) within 58-57 with 31.1 seconds remaining, but Carrington and Delgado each hit a free throw to extend the Pirates' lead to 60-57 with 2.7 seconds left.

Bird had a chance to sent it into overtime, but his 3-pointer from about 25 feet as time expired was no good.

California closed out the first half with an 11-4 run to turn a four-point deficit into a 34-31 lead.

It was just the second meeting between the teams with California winning 81-76 on Dec. 8, 1973.

BIG PICTURE

California: Rabb, a 6-11 sophomore, struggled for the second consecutive game. He made just 3 of his 8 shots from the field and finished with eight points after being held to a season-low six points against Princeton Tuesday. Rabb, who has been playing with a left wrist injury, entered Wednesday's game averaging 17.5 points per game.

Seton Hall: The Pirates reeled off their third straight win despite making just 9 of their 20 attempts (45 percent) from the free-throw line. They shot just 46.6 percent (21 of 45) on free throws for the two-day tournament.

UP NEXT

California will host UC Davis Saturday, its seventh home game in 10 contests this season.