Men's Hoops Comeback vs. Santa Clara Falls Short

Lorne Jackson

Jan. 19, 2013

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MALIBU, Calif. - The Pepperdine men's basketball team almost pulled off another second-half comeback fueled by Lorne Jackson and Jordan Baker, but Santa Clara held on for an 83-76 road victory in West Coast Conference play on Saturday night.

The Waves (9-9, 1-4 WCC) trailed by as many as 13 points in the second half yet had a chance to tie the game with 3 1/2 minutes remaining, but the Broncos (14-6, 3-3 WCC) got 29 points from Kevin Foster, including some key baskets down the stretch.

Jackson (Simi Valley, Calif./Simi Valley HS), a senior guard, had his second-highest output of the season with 23 points, 14 of which came in the second half. Jackson made eight of 12 shots and also had five assists. Baker (Tempe, Ariz./Tempe HS), a sophomore guard, added 15 points, 10 of which came after halftime.

Santa Clara shot 53.6% as a team and made 12 three-pointers (six by Foster). The Waves shot 46.2% overall but did make 66.7% of their three-pointers (8-for-12) and made their first 16 free throws en route to a 20-for-26 performance.

"It's disappointing that Santa Clara shot the ball as well as they did, but they're one of the best shooting teams in our league, especially from three," Pepperdine Coach Marty Wilson said. "We played with energy and effort. We tried to defend with some urgency. Our guys didn't quit or back down. We executed offensively in the second half. There are a lot of things we can learn and improve on heading into our next game."

The Waves took their largest lead at 25-21 after a three-pointer by freshman guard Atif Russell (Katy, Texas/Seven Lakes HS). Their last lead of the contest was at 30-29 after a three-pointer by Jackson with 5:13 remaining in the half.

But the Broncos finished the first half on a 17-6 run, including eight of Marc Trasolini's 18 points and a three-pointer right before the buzzer by Raymond Cowels III, putting SCU ahead 46-36 at halftime.

A Trasolini dunk gave Santa Clara its largest lead of 13 points at 55-42 with 15:52 to play. It was still a nine-point game at 68-59 with seven minutes to go when Baker sparked a 7-0 run. He made three free throws, and after a putback by freshman forward Stacy Davis (Laveen, Ariz./Fairfax HS), Baker made a steal and scored on a lay-up to cut the deficit to two points at 68-66 with 4:40 to play. The Waves got the ball back with a chance to tie, but Baker's jumper was off the mark.

Foster then scored five points on the Broncos' next possession. He sank a jumper in the lane and was fouled. Though he missed the free throw, SCU maintained possession and Foster drained a three-pointer to push the lead back up to 73-66 with 2:59 to go.

Foster added a jumper and a three-pointer on the Broncos' next two possessions, but the Waves stayed close as Jackson scored eight points in a minute-and-a-half span, including a three-pointer that made the score 78-74 with 48 seconds to play. But SCU made its free throws down the stretch to hold on for the victory.

The Waves' bench, sparked by a season-high nine points from freshman guard Austin Mills (Beverly Hills, Calif./Beverly Hills HS) and seven by Russell, outscored Santa Clara's 21-13.

Pepperdine goes on the road for four of its next six games, beginning at rival Loyola Marymount for a PCH Cup battle on Thursday (Jan. 24) at 6 p.m. The game will be televised by Time Warner Cable SportsNet and fans can also listen to the game via WaveCasts and join an interactive live game blog/chat at



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