Cal Tops Santa Clara, 72-60
BERKELEY (AP) – Andre Kelly scored 18 points and grabbed eight rebounds as California pulled away from Santa Clara to earn a 72-60 win on Saturday night in Haas Pavilion. The victory was Cal's sixth straight at home since Nov. 15.
The Golden Bears (6-5) were a perfect 10-for-10 from the line, including all six free throw attempts in the final minute.
Santa Clara tied the game at 53-53 on a layup by PJ Pipes with just under six minutes to play, but Kelly – who recorded 14 of his points and seven of his rebounds in the second half – scored at the basket and Grant Anticevich hit a jumper and a layup to spark a 10-2 run.
Jordan Shepherd scored 15 points and dished a game-high six assists for Cal and Anticevich, coming off of two straight double-double performances, added 12 points and grabbed eight rebounds.
"Our chemistry is working really well together," Shepherd said of Kelly, who he assisted four times on Saturday night. "He's proven to be a dominant force in the paint. He's proved that all season."
Cal trailed by 10, 34-24, with 4:12 remaining before halftime when Sam Alajiki knocked down the Bears' first 3-pointer of the night and sparked a 14-0 run to end the half. Makale Foreman (5), Shepherd (4) and Lars Thiemann (2) all contributed during the run, which ended in Cal heading to the locker room up 38-34.
"That group finished the first half really well, gave us a lead, and I thought changed the game," Cal head coach Mark Fox said. "It was a game that we had to play the full 40 minutes and in the second half, the fact that we defended the 3-point line well was really key. We feel like it's a really good win, because we know (Santa Clara has) a really good program."
Cal outrebounded Santa Clara 44-26 – the 15th time in the past 19 games that Cal has won or tied the battle on the glass – and limited the Broncos to just one offensive rebound. Meanwhile, the Bears shot 29-of-62 from the field (46.8 percent), led by Kelly's 8-of-11 individual effort.
Keshawn Justice scored 13 points and grabbed nine rebounds to lead the Broncos (7-4). Jalen Williams and Giordan Williams finished with 12 and 11 points, respectively.
Cal will take a week off from competition for final exams before it hosts Dartmouth at 1 p.m. PT Sunday, Dec. 19.
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