Cardinal Stunned By Spiders 83-69

Dec 18, 2002

Stanford, Calif. - Stanford coach Mike Montgomery can't find one thing right about his team this week.

Mike Skrocki scored 27 points as Richmond helped ruin the No. 17 Cardinal's own tournament with an 83-69 victory in the consolation game of the Stanford Invitational on Tuesday night.

'We need to go back to basics,' said Montgomery, who could just as easily have been celebrating his 500th win if things had gone as planned. 'We're not defending very well at all. We're not getting hands in people's faces. We can't run the break. We can't run the court. We can't shoot. We can't get anything easy.'

It was the first time the Cardinal dropped consecutive non-conference home games since 1981, when they lost to Santa Clara and Marquette.

Pepperdine won the tournament by defeating Montana 86-69 in the championship earlier Tuesday behind a career-high 19 points by David Patten and four others who scored in double figures.

Montana shocked Stanford 70-68 in Monday night's first round on a last-second 3-pointer by David Bell.

The Cardinal (5-3) lost both games of their own tournament for the first time. The tournament began in 1984, and Stanford had won the past seven titles.

The fans didn't like it either - they left early, a rare occurrence at Maples Pavilion.

'There's always a hangover, win or lose the night before,' Richmond coach Jerry Wainwright said. 'Stanford had a hangover.'

And Skrocki kicked his hangover. He was 0-for-10 Monday in a loss to Pepperdine, but shot 8-for-11 from the field Tuesday and converted all eight of his free throws.

'We were disappointed in losing yesterday and didn't feel we gave it our all for 40 minutes,' he said. 'In fact, we felt we gave away 20 minutes yesterday, and we were not about to do it again.'

Eric Zwayer added 18 points, and Jamaal Scott and Tony Dobbins had 11 each for the Spiders (4-3), who shot a season-high 59.5 percent.

Josh Childress scored 16 points for Stanford, which shot 44 percent. Julius Barnes and Matt Lottich added 13 points each.

Richmond used an 11-4 run to go ahead 51-44 with 11:26 left and held it. Dan Grunfeld hit a 3 for Stanford with 7:09 to go to pull the Cardinal to 55-51, but Reggie Brown answered with a 3 on the other end and Skrocki added two free throws. Skrocki converted two more from the line with 4:30 left.

Brown, playing just his second game after sitting out with a lower back strain, finished with 10 points.

The Cardinal were not in sync on offense, made silly fouls on defense and were sloppy with the ball and in their decision making. They were outhustled for much of the game, too.

Their only noteworthy statistic was a 30-20 rebounding edge, and that was a season-low total.

In Monday's loss, Stanford converted only 17 of 32 free throws.

The Cardinal fell behind by as many as 10 points early, but Childress got them back in it. He hit back-to-back 3-pointers in a 21-second span late in the first half to make it a 2-point game. Barnes then added a long jumper at 1:10 left, and the teams went into halftime tied at 30.

Richmond shot 52 percent in the first half, including Skrocki's 3-for-3 from 3-point territory.

Montgomery still needs two victories to reach the 500-win mark.

'We just have to find a way to win, and I don't know how we're going to do it,' he said.

Chris Hernandez, projected to be Stanford's starting point guard, will miss the rest of the season after breaking the same bone in his left foot he originally injured in October.

Hernandez was hurt Monday night.

No surgery is planned, but he will be on crutches for six weeks and then spend another six weeks in a protective boot. Hernandez probably won't start running again until the spring.

A sophomore from Fresno, Hernandez appeared in only two games. He scored two points, both free throws, in 18 minutes.

'We were all just sick when we found out,' Montgomery said. 'The news sucked the air out of us, but the team we have is what we have.'


AP Sports Writer

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