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SoCal Challenge: Santa Clara beats TCU; Fresno State holds off Pepperdine

SoCal Challenge: Santa Clara beats TCU; Fresno State holds off Pepperdine

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO — Jalen Williams scored 22 points, PJ Pipes added 17 and hot-shooting Santa Clara took down previously unbeaten TCU, 85-66, in the SoCal Challenge on Monday night at JSerra High.

Giordan Williams added 15 points and Keshawn Justice 10 for the Broncos (5-0), who shot 11 for 16 from 3-point range (68.8%) and 61.2% (30 for 49) overall.

Justice also had 10 rebounds and the Broncos had a 39-24 advantage on the boards against a team that came in grabbing 48 misses a game, 17 on the offensive end.

Santa Clara will play Fresno State (4-0) in a battle of unbeatens on Wednesday at 10 p.m., while TCU faces Pepperdine (2-4) on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.

TCU (3-1) was only allowing 54 points per game, but Santa Clara came in having shot 53.8% over its first four games.

Maxwell Evans scored 15 points for the Horned Frogs, who were 7 for 20 from long range and shot 41% overall (26 for 64). Micah Peavy and Mike Miles both had 10 points.

TCU’s only lead was an opening free throw and the Horned Frogs tied the score at four. The Broncos kept a slender lead until closing the half on a 12-0 run for a 43-29 lead.

Williams had 10 of his 12 first-half points in the final 4½ minutes, and the Broncos closed the half making seven of their last eight shots.

Santa Clara shot 60% (18 for 30) while TCU shot 37% (11 for 30).

The Broncos picked up where they left off after the intermission, scoring the first 14 points of the second half to take a 57-29 lead. Pipes had two 3-pointers and Giordo Williams and Justice also connected from distance.

TCU put together a 12-0 run as Santa Clara had a string of turnovers but the Horned Frogs could only get within 16.

In other first-round games … 

Fresno State 70, Pepperdine 63: Orlando Robinson and Isaiah Hill combined to score 30 points to help Fresno fend off Pepperdine in the final game of the night. Robinson scored 14 of his 16 points in the first half for the Bulldogs (4-0).

Jan Zidek topped the Waves (2-4) with 20 points. Mike Mitchell Jr. added 15 points and hit two late 3-pointers to pull Pepperdine within 65-63 with 34 seconds left, but Hill went 5 for 6 from the free-throw line from there to stave off the Waves.

A Mitchell basket got Pepperdine within 62-58 with 4:07 left, but both teams went scoreless for the next three-plus minutes, until Fresno’s Anthony Holland beat the shot clock with a 3-pointer with 53 seconds left. Mitchell made his jumpers to cut it to 65-63 from there.

Nicholls State 75, Cal Poly 72 (OT): Ty Gordon had 24 points and Devante Carter had 20 points to lead Nicholls State (4-2). Pierce Spencer had eight rebounds.

Alimamy Koroma had a career-high 23 points for the Mustangs (1-4), whose losing streak reached four games. Camren Pierce added 11 points and six rebounds, and Kyle Colvin had 10 points.

Utah Valley 83, Idaho 45: Fardaws Aimaq had 14 points and 16 rebounds and Connor Harding had 14 points and seven rebounds as Utah Valley (4-1) cruised to an easy win. Tim Fuller added 11 points, and Justin Harmon had 10.

Trevante Anderson had 13 points to lead the Vandals (1-4).


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