Sports


Randle leads Stanford men to important Pac-12 hoops victory

Chasson Randle took his turn as Stanford's main man on Saturday night and if this keeps up, the Cardinal men's basketball team could be fun to watch this season.

Robbie Lemons enjoyed one of his better nights too, earning plenty of playing time for a team that has found its way back into the upper half of the Pac-12 Conference standings.

Stanford topped visiting Washington, 79-67, and finds itself in a fourth-place tie with UCLA.

"I am not really focused on the scoring," Randle said. "I am just happy we won the game. I can lay my head down tonight and say we won and they lost. That is all that matters."

The Cardinal men (3-2, 12-5) can break that tie on Thursday when it heads to Westwood for an 8 p.m. tipoff against the No. 25 Bruins (3-2, 14-4).

UCLA may not be ranked, though, after falling to host Utah on Saturday. Too bad, really, since Stanford already owns two road wins over nationally ranked opponents this season.

Dwight Powell and Josh Huestis each recorded a double-double in the victory. Powell had 17 points and 10 rebounds, while Huestis had 13 points and 10 rebounds.

"It was a good team win," Powell said. "Defensively the key was taking away their key guys."

That meant Huskies' sharpshooter C.J. Wilcox, who entered the game averaging 20.3 points and leading the Pac-12 in three-point field goals made per game (3.2) and free-throw percentage (.889).

The strategy worked. Wilcox was 4 of 13 from the floor, 1 of 6 from long range and did not attempt a free throw.

Anthony Brown drew the assignment on Wilcox, holding to fewer than 10 points for the first time this season.

"Anthony did a great job making him take hard shots," said Powell, who attempted 15 free throws, the most by a Stanford player in four years. "It's a mindset. The big guys talked a lot about being laser precision focused on all the little things."

Huestis blocked two shots, the last one with 29 seconds remaining, to jump into second place on the all-time list. He has 157 total, 10 shy of matching seven-footer Tim Young for the most in Cardinal history.

Since shooting just over 41 percent in its loss to Oregon State last week, Stanford has been much more efficient from the field, shooting the ball a combined 55 percent over the past three games, all wins.

Lemons, averaging 8.3 minutes, earned more playing time as a result of his aggressive play. He matched his career high with 26 minutes and shared the team lead in assists (3) with Powell.

Lemons did not turn the ball over and made two critical defensive plays down the stretch that helped Stanford open a 14-point lead with 3:34 remaining to play.

Randle opened the season with a hot hand and has barely cooled down. He's shooting .522 this season (.420 from 3-point range) after last season's disappointing .399 (.359) effort.

"I thought Chasson played a terrific game on both ends of the floor," Stanford coach Johnny Dawkins said. "I thought he defended well and made a number of good plays. He got to the basket and finished well. That was a real spark for us, his ability to get to the paint and create for himself."

He's averaging a team-high 19.5 points a game after averaging 13.8 and 13.6 his first two years with the Cardinal.

Randle, who has 1,307 career points, reached double figures for the 15th time, scored at least 20 points for the eighth time and at least 29 points four times.

He became the first Cardinal to record at least 30 points in a season since Landry Fields accomplished the feat four years ago.

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