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Stanford Upended By Belmont, 70-62
Courtesy: Stanford Athletics  
Release: 11/18/2012

Nov. 18, 2012

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STANFORD, Calif.- Ian Clark and his teammates let a 14-point lead in the second half disappear. Then they did something about it.

Clark scored 11 of his 15 points in the second half, including a go-ahead 3-pointer, to lead Belmont past Stanford 70-62 Sunday night.

"We knew that they were going to make a run," Clark said. "It's their home court, they're a good team, so we just had to take the run, come out of it, and compose ourselves. It's as simple as that."

Kerron Johnson added 14 points as the Bruins (3-0) rebounded from losing the lead when Clark hit a 3-pointer with just under six minutes to play. Blake Jenkins had 11 points. Trevor Noack had 10 points.

Christian Sanders and Stefan Nastic each scored 11 points to lead the Cardinal (3-1), which entered the game owning the nation's longest winning streak at eight games dating back to last year. Josh Huestis established career-high totals in rebounds (14) and blocks (8) while Chasson Randle added 10 points.

Stanford missed its first 12 3-point attempts before Sanders nailed a long-range shot with 12 minutes remaining to play, breathing new life into the Cardinal.

"We have not shot the ball well and that's somewhat of a surprise for all of us," Stanford coach Johnny Dawkins said. "Everybody has to stay confident and keep believing. It will come together."

Andy Brown sank a pair of free throws with 8:24 left to put Stanford ahead at 49-48, erasing a 14-point, second-half deficit. The Bruins, who had lost their previous four games against Pac-12 teams, built a 41-27 advantage less than two minutes into the second half.

Belmont, with 11 returning players from its NCAA tournament team of a year ago, handled the Cardinal run and continued to attack the basket despite losing the lead.

"They showed their experience and poise," Dawkins said. "They made shots when they needed to make them. It's tough when you shoot 31 percent."

by Rick Eymer, Associated Press

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NOTES: Stanford shot 31.0 percent overall, including a 2-19 mark from three-point territory. Excluding a 7-15 outing in the season opener, the Cardinal is just 8-50 (16.0 percent) from beyond the arc over its last three games ... The Cardinal held a 48-39 rebounding edge and finished 24-35 from the charity stripe ... Josh Huestis finished with eight blocks, the most since Brook Lopez recorded 12 swats in a triple-double performance against USC back on Jan. 25, 2007 ... Making his second career start, Stefan Nastic fell one rebound shy of his first career double-double. Nastic matched his career high in points (11) and grabbed a personal-best nine boards ... Aaron Bright (1-10 FG, 0-4 3FG) and Chasson Randle (1-11 FG, 0-5 3FG) were a combined 2-21 overall and 0-9 from three-point territory ... Stanford held a 31-11 edge in bench scoring ... Dwight Powell played only seven minutes, fouling out at the 16:37 mark of the second half while scoring only two points ... Grant Verhoeven (four points, three rebounds) scored his first collegiate basket with 2:22 remaining in the first half ... Belmont entered the game shooting 53.2 percent from the field and three-point territory. The Bruins were limited to 36.2 percent overall and 26.1 percent from long range ... The Cardinal is now 70-20 over its last 90 games at Maples Pavilion dating back to the start of the 2008-09 campaign ... Stanford next faces Missouri on Thursday, Nov. 22, in the opening round of the Battle 4 Atlantis in Paradise Island, Bahamas.

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Stanford Head Coach Johnny Dawkins
General thoughts on the game...
"We schedule really good opponents so these games are going to be competitive. Give them credit. They made their shots when they had to. They showed their experience and their poise, and they were able to win. I was proud of our guys for fighting back in the second half. We made a run with a lot of young guys; a lot of freshmen were in the game at that time. They showed a lot of poise for us, and I learned a lot about my team, as well."

On the team's shooting woes...
"We've not shot the ball well. You know, it's somewhat of a surprise for all of us. Last year at least our guys shot it well, and we've not shot it as well as we would have liked to this year. So, we have to execute it better. We've got to move the ball, get the ball to the people we want to, in their sweet spots."

On the performance of the freshmen...
"Those kids are still earning opportunities because they're playing well. I think we'll see those kids playing more for us because they deserve it. That's part of the sport, competition, and I thought with their performances today, several of those kids deserve the opportunity to play. For those kids to come in and contribute the way they did says a lot about their character.

On Dwight Powell fouling out after seven minutes...
"He's been playing so well that losing him is of course a big loss for us. He's a difference-maker out there for us, not just because he scores, but because of his presence out there on the floor. He does so many things well on both the offensive and defensive end."

Junior Josh Huestis
General thoughts on the game...
"They're a very good team, they can play and we just didn't come to play tonight. We didn't bring our best or come in focused. Belmont did and they showed that tonight. They played really well and we've just got to get back in the gym, get ready for the next game."

On team's shooting woes...
"I'm not worried about our shooting right now. We've got a lot of good shooters; they're just not falling. And we're trying to be a team where that doesn't affect us. We want to be a defensive-minded team first, play inside then out, but it definitely doesn't help the way we're shooting right now. Our defense wasn't there tonight, either. So that kind of spelled disaster for us."

Junior Stefan Nastic
General thoughts on the game...
"First and foremost, Belmont is a very good team. They came out and played very well, and you've got to give credit to them there. We need to be a lot more focused individually and collectively on offense and defense. I thought little, small mistakes built up during the game and we've got to brush up and go back to work."

Belmont Head Coach Rick Byrd
General thoughts on the game...
"I am sure proud of our young men. At the timeout (media timeout with 7:48 left in the game), we had some pretty serious foul trouble. They had the momentum and the crowd on their side, we were in foul trouble -- to come back from that and take control of the game, it says a lot about the character, guts and heart in our team. I don't think this class has ever had as good a non-conference win as this one. And we've had some good teams and good years."

What happened after Stanford took a 49-48 lead...
"I don't know. Momentum is a funny thing in sports. It seems to come and go without explanation. It really doesn't matter what sport it is. I don't know what happened, but we talked during that timeout about winning it by 10 points. We said we would win the game by 10 points. I guess we won the rest (of the game) by 11. I just tried to change their mindset about what just happened and what we needed to do. The end result to me was that we saw the strong side of character and heart -- we've got that in us to do it."

On his team's resiliency...
"We were on the road, at a Pac-12 school, against the team with the longest win streak in the country. They had all the momentum and we had foul trouble. A lot of things were against us and we still found a way. This team is going to have to `find a way' more than some of our other teams, because we don't have as much depth and are not as good inside. It's a big win for Belmont, for sure."

Senior Ian Clark
On his team's resiliency after Stanford took a late lead...
"Coach just told us to stay poised and stay within ourselves. We knew that they were going to make a run -- it's their home court, they're a good team, so we just had to take the run, come out of it, and compose ourselves -- it's as simple as that. He was telling us, 'Don't look at the score. Play hard.' We didn't have to worry about making the next shot and then the next shot -- we were just playing every possession our hardest. We did that. We got the lead back and kept it."



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