The University of San Francisco Dons men’s basketball team defeated their ancient Bay Area rival Santa Clara for the 100th time last Thursday, January 26 at the Leavey Event Center in the South Bay. The Dons dominated the Broncos 90-77, marking USF’s fourth win in five attempts against the Broncos who have yet to win a game in the WCC this season.
The Dons had a great night offensively, shooting 53.6 percent from the field and 41.6 percent from beyond the arc. Four Dons accrued double digit scoring, led by senior Angelo Caloiaro with twenty points and junior Perris Blackwell with nineteen. Rashad Green and Cody Doolin also put up eighteen points and fourteen points respectively. Green hit a clutch, buzzer-beating three-pointer to give the Dons a strong 41-33 advantage before the halftime intermission.
The Dons’ momentum stayed high in the second half as Santa Clara went down by sixteen points with fourteen minutes left in the match. Both teams were playing ferociously, trading baskets back and forth. With two minutes left to play, Santa Clara’s Denzel Johnson cut the Dons lead down to five points. San Francisco’s sophomore guard Cody Doolin responded, pushing the Dons’ lead back to seven. This sparked an 11-3 run for the Dons that sealed the victory.
Santa Clara’s scoring was led by Johnson who put up a career high twenty-six points and paced the Broncos’ 48.5 percent shooting. Santa Clara had trouble bypassing strong defense in the paint and had to resort to shooting from the outside. The Broncos shot miserably from deep, converting on only two out of fourteen attempted three pointers. Additionally, the Dons defense forced the Broncos to commit nine turnovers, which led to twelve points for the Green and Gold.
The Dons continue to strive for entry into the WCC tournament as they face off against the University of San Diego on Saturday January 28 at War Memorial Gymnasium.