BERKELEY (CBS/AP) — California, still stinging from an earlier loss to Stanford, came out Saturday in a stingy man-to-man defense and went after its Bay Area rival from the opening tipoff.
Allen Crabbe scored 21 of his 24 points in the second half, Harper Kamp added 20 points and the Golden Bears opened the game on a 19-4 run en route to a 74-55 victory over the Cardinal.
“We talked about it a lot this week,” Kamp said of that earlier defeat vs. Stanford. “We were pretty sour about that loss. Looking at film and things like that, being our first game, we were upset we weren’t prepared for that intensity of the Pac-10 level. We got burned for it and wanted to come out tonight and change that.”
Markhuri Sanders-Frison had 13 points and 13 rebounds after being honored before the game at Haas Pavilion as the lone senior for defending Pac-10 champion Cal (17-13, 10-8 Pac-10).
Jeremy Green scored 19 points to lead Stanford (15-15, 7-11), which trailed by as many as 18 in the first half and scored its fewest points in this series since a 68-54 loss to Cal on Jan. 6, 2002. No other Cardinal player scored more than seven points.
“I thought they outplayed us tonight, you can go down the line,” Stanford coach Johnny Dawkins said. “They played with a lot of energy and executed. They’re a different team for sure.”
Crabbe, who also had nine rebounds and five assists, hit his team’s first 3-pointer of the game with 15:16 left after the Bears missed their first six tries from long range.
Kamp scored five straight points during a 14-2 run that helped Cal pull away after Green’s 3-pointer with 16:04 left got the Cardinal within 37-28. Dawkins considered that a key stretch – one in which Stanford gave up too many second-chance points and baskets in transition.
The 6-foot-7, 265-pound Sanders-Frison shot just 4 for 12 but was an imposing presence on both ends for the Bears. The student section chanted his name in the closing minutes.
“I’m always playing every game like it’s my last. Just enjoy it, man, that’s my main focus,” Sanders-Frison said.
Cal will face Southern California in the Nos. 4-5 game at next week’s Pac-10 tournament in Los Angeles after being picked in the preseason to finish seventh under third-year coach Mike Montgomery. He spent 18 seasons coaching Stanford.
The Cardinal won the first meeting 82-68 on Jan. 2, ending a three-game skid in the series. But they never led in this one as Cal came out inspired from the opening tipoff.
“There was a whole lot more at stake for us. As we looked at the league, if we won this game, we thought we could get in as No. 4 all by ourselves,” Montgomery said. “We wanted to be the aggressor. … The kids came to play.”
The Bears shot 55.8 percent, outrebounded Stanford 38-26 and made 15 of 20 free throws to just 9 for 19 by the cold-shooting Cardinal. Cal overcame 16 turnovers and 1 for 9 shooting from 3-point range.
Richard Solomon scored all six of his points on first-half dunks for Cal.
Stanford started the game 2 for 13 and Cal converted 8 of its initial 14 shots en route to the 19-4 lead. Kamp scored six straight points early to get the Bears rolling.
“We’re just a gritty group of guys,” Montgomery said. “We’re not going to win any glamour contests.”
Stanford had five turnovers in the first 8 1/2 minutes, went 3:41 between its first and second field goals and then another 5:51 before Green scored at the 8:23 mark. The Cardinal missed their first six 3-point tries before Green connected with 5:13 left in the opening half.
Stanford trailed 33-21 at halftime, matching its third-lowest half of the season.
The Cardinal had won two in a row after a four-game losing streak, including a win at Oregon on Feb. 26 and a non-conference home victory against Seattle University on Tuesday.
“A lot of their young guys are stepping up and playing well,” Green said. “They seem like a more confident team. They defended well.”
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