California junior forward Grant Anticevich buried all five of his 3-pointers to score a career-high 23 points and Matt Bradley chipped in with 16 points to lead the Bears to an 82-62 victory over California Baptist on Friday in the 2K Empire Classic benefitting Wounded Warrior Project at Haas Pavilion in Berkeley.
Anticevich’s career night included a fiery 9-for-11 shooting display to go with nine rebounds, four assists, a steal and a block. Ferron Flavors Jr. led the Lancers with 11 points and seven rebounds. The Lancers shot 23.3 percent (8-for-31) on 3-pointers.
Playing the first of four games as part of the Empire Classic, the Bears (3-0) host Prairie View A&M on Monday before playing nationally ranked Duke at Madison Square Garden in New York City on Thursday.
The Bears are off to their best start since winning their first four games in 2015-16. The Bears started fast by scoring the first six points to seize control of the game.
But Cal-Baptist (2-2) rebounded to seize its first lead on Milan Acquaah’s jumper at the 19:06 mark of the second half. The Bears answered with six straight points to go ahead 46-42 on Kareem South’s layup.
After the Lancers sliced the deficit to 51-48, Anticevich canned a 3-pointer and drained a jumper to extend the lead to 56-48 with 13:43 left.
The Lancers scored just eight points in the first eight-plus minutes of the second half, as the Bears made nine of their first 10 shot attempts to gain control of the game.
Behind an early scoring spree from Anticevich, the Bears jumped out to a 9-2 lead. The 6-foot-8 junior forward came out on fire to pad the Bears’ lead to 16-6 with 15:41 left.
Anticevich, who entered the game averaging four points per game, eclipsed his career-high of 13 points in the first half. He buried four 3s for 16 points in the first half, but the Lancers fought back by hitting their last four shots to enter halftime tied at 40-40 before succumbing to a cold spell in the second half.
—Field Level Media