ANCHORAGE, Alaska – Victor Sanders scored a game-high 24 points, including 19 in the second half, to help Idaho rally past Santa Clara men's basketball for a 69-59 victory on Wednesday during opening-day action in bracket play in the GCI Great Alaska Shootout.
Perrrion Callandret tallied 20 points for the Vandals (3-1) who shot 46 percent from the floor, including 11-for-20 from behind the 3-point line. Callandret was a perfect 5-for-5 from beyond the 3-point line.
KJ Feagin scored a team-high 18 points for the Broncos (1-3) who shott just 38 percent from the floor and went scoreless for the last five minutes.
Feagin's 3-pointer with 5:13 remaining gave the Broncos, who led by as many as 10 midway through the second half, a 59-55 lead, but Sanders took over from there, scoring 10 of the team's final 14 points as the Vandals showed why they were a near unanimous pick to win the Big Sky Conference this season.
Sanders nailed a 3-pointer from the wing to give the Vandals a 60-59 lead. Neither team scored for the next two minutes then Sanders connected on another 3-pointer with 1:25 left.
The Vandals led by as many as six in the first half before Hauser's buzzer-beating 3-pointer at halftime cut the deficit to 25-24.
Caruso capped a 10-3 run with a pair of free throws, extending the Santa Clara lead to 50-40 with 10:03 left in the game before the Vandals slowly clawed their way back.
Vrankic scored seven points and had a team-high eight rebounds. Feagin had a team-best six assists.
Both teams turned the ball over 12 times and scored 20 points in the paint.
• The Broncos are making their third appearance in the GCI Great Alaska Shootout, which is in its 40th, and final, year of existence.
• Matt Hauser, KJ Feagin, Emmanuel Ndumanya, Henry Caruso and Jarvis Pugh started the first three games, but freshman Josip Vrankic was inserted this evening for Pugh and played 23 minutes, the most of his young career
• Hauser scored his 500th career point. He entered the game with 497 points in 65 career games.
|Game Notes||Santa Clara | Alaska-Anchorage|
The Broncos, making their third all-time appearance in the GCI Great Alaska Shootout, play host Alaska-Anchorage at 9 p.m. Pacific. The Seawolves lost to CSU-Bakersfield on Wednesday.