Cal takes care of Stanford
Cal trailed Stanford for all but three minutes Saturday at Maples Pavilion in Stanford, Calif., but that was all the Golden Bears needed to steal a 77-74 win in the Pac-12 Conference opener for both teams.
The Golden Bears (7-7, 1-0 Pac-12) rallied from down eight points in the final 2:47 with a 15-4 scoring flurry, led by forward Marcus Lee’s 19 points on 9 of-11 shooting.
Lee paced a balanced attack with four of Cal’s five starters scoring in double figures. Guards Don Coleman and Darius McNeill hit for 15 and 13 points, with Lee’s frontcourt mate Justice Sueing adding 18 points.
Before Cal’s end-of-game surge — in which Sueing scored nine of his points, including six consecutively in one stretch — the Golden Bears mustered just three points in the preceding 2:27.
It was a stretch reflective of much of the game for Cal, which made just five 3-pointers on the night and shot a dismal 10 of 20 from the free throw line.
Despite Cal’s offensive woes, however, Stanford (6-8, 0-1) failed to put the Golden Bears away.
The Cardinal led nearly the entirely way, with the frontcourt duo of Reid Travis and Michael Humphrey scoring 15 points apiece to lead four Stanford players in double figures. Humphrey also had 13 rebounds for a double-double.
Cal went ahead 6-2 in the opening 2:16 but was outscored 33-12 in the ensuing 15 minutes. Cal trailed by as many 17 points in the first half and 15 in the second.
The Golden Bears hung around thanks to Stanford’s own offensive struggles. The Cardinal shot 44.1 percent from the floor, 29.4 percent from behind the 3-point line and 51.5 percent at the foul line.