Sports


Owens leads Stanford men hoops past San Diego, 75-66

 

Josh Owens scored 17 points as Stanford stayed unbeaten at home with a balanced, 75-55, victory over visiting San Diego on Saturday night.

The Cardinal (9-1) players might have been happy they scored 75 points but they were more upset allowing 34 second-half points to the Toreros.

"We had some lulls offensively but defensively it was unacceptable," Owens said. "We definitely didn't play the way we needed to play, specifically on defense. That's our identity. Defensively, we can bring it all the time and we didn't have the defensive game we should have."

Chasson Randle added 15 points and hit back-to-back 3-pointers in the waning minutes for the experienced Cardinal, which is off to its best start since opening 10-0 in coach Johnny Dawkins' first season of 2008-09. Stanford continues to make a case for being included in the Top 25, though the Cardinal might need a victory against a higher-profile team before jumping into the poll.

Stanford hosts Bethune-Cookman (3-8 after losing at St. Mary's) on Monday night at 7 p.m., and can make a move in the rankings with a victory over visiting Butler on Thursday, also at 7 p.m.

"We have to get better," Dawkins said. "Defense has been an identity for us. We did not defend well. Our offensive execution can still get better. I think it's the best defensive team that I've coached here. It's something we've wanted the entire time. They're buying into it, they understand the importance of it and they enjoy doing it."

Anthony Brown had nine points and Stanford shot 51 percent, including 56.5 percent in the second half. Everybody but one who played Saturday had at least one rebound and all but two also scored in the team's fourth straight win since a 69-63 loss to now-No. 1 Syracuse on Nov. 25.

Stanford, which entered the game allowing only 56.2 points per game, returned from a 13-day break for final exams to hold its seventh opponent below 60 points and improved to 36-11 in nonconference games under Dawkins.

After San Diego jumped to a 6-2 lead, Jack Trotter hit a 10-foot jumper, sparking a 17-0 run over a six-minute span to take control.

Stanford leads the all-time series between the schools, 5-2, and also beat San Diego, 68-64, in its season opener last year.

"I don't believe in going 12 deep," Dawkins said. "What we've said to our guys is, `When everyone's playing at a high level, we'll find ways to play you.'"

Diving

Three-time Olympian Troy Dumais joined Stanford freshman Kristian Ipsen to win the first gold medal of the USA Diving Winter National Championships and World Cup Trials with their victory in the men's synchronized 3-meter event Saturday in Nashville, Tenn.

The pair scored a combined 883.44 points over the course of two lists of dives, starting off with 421.74 points in the morning prelims to take a 31.98 advantage into the evening finals. They improved their performance in the finals with 461.70 points, highlighted by a 92.82-point effort on a front 2 ½ with two twists that earned two 10s from the judges.

The win earned the pair a spot on the U.S. team for the FINA World Cup in London in February, when they'll look to qualify the United States a quota spot in synchronized 3-meter for the 2012 Olympic Games.

"Our finals were really solid," Ipsen said. "It was one of our better scores, and I'm really happy because it was much better than our score at the Pan Am Games (in October). Hopefully we can continue on that upward pattern at the World Cup."

Dumais and Ipsen won the silver medal at the Pan American Games but scored just 411.99 points. Additional time together earlier this month helped prepare the two for nationals.

"Kristian and I trained together from December 1-4 and worked out some of the kinks in our timing. It's been a tough couple months for me, but the last two weeks I've been training better than I have in a long time. I'm more confident and am enjoying the moment," said Dumais, who picked up his 35th career national title.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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