STANFORD, Calif.- Chasson Randle’s 21 points led four players in double figures as Stanford overwhelmed South Dakota State 92-60 on Sunday night at Maples Pavilion in a regional game to conclude the Progressive Legends Classic.
Responding with an emphatic statement following Tuesday’s 88-67 loss to Pittsburgh in the tournament’s championship game, Stanford (6-2) was unstoppable on offense from the opening tip. The Cardinal shot 59.6 percent overall, 7-14 from long distance and 17-22 from the foul line while dishing out 15 assists.
The Cardinal put the game out of reach with its best first-half performance in six years. Stanford built a 58-24 halftime lead, its most points in any half since ambushing Harvard 63-28 over the first 20 minutes on the way to a 111-56 rout back on Nov. 8, 2007.
Anthony Brown added 19 points and Josh Huestis pitched in with 13, as both finished two rebounds shy of notching a double-double. Stefan Nastic chipped in with 10 points, making all four of his attempts from the field and finishing 2-3 from the foul line with three rebounds.
Stanford also played smothering defense, limiting South Dakota State (3-6) to just 33.8 percent shooting overall and a 6-25 mark from three-point range. The Jackrabbits were also forced into 15 turnovers.
After scoring the first 13 points of the game, Stanford extended its lead to 30-9 following a layup from Robbie Lemons midway through the first half.
Leading 33-17, Stanford embarked on a 25-7 scoring run to close out a first half that featured 66.7 percent (24-36) shooting.
The Cardinal’s biggest lead of the game was 39 points, moving in front 67-28 following a pair of free throws from Randle with 15:42 remaining.
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NOTES: Head coach Johnny Dawkins notched his 100th career win. Dawkins joins Mike Montgomery (393), Howard Dallmar (256), Everett Dean (167) and John Bunn (108) as the only coaches in school history with 100 victories on The Farm … Stanford has scored 50 points in a half four times already this year. The Cardinal accomplished the feat only twice in 34 games last year … Chasson Randle registered his third 20-point game of the year and 13th of his career. Randle also moved past Terry Taylor into the school’s top-10 for career three-pointers made (157) … Josh Huestis finished with four swats, increasing his career total to 142 and ranking fourth in school history. His next target is Curtis Borchardt at 146 … Stanford improved to 68-24 at home and 58-19 against nonconference opponents under Dawkins … The Cardinal matched a season high with nine steals, three coming from Randle … The Cardinal received 20 points from its bench. Marcus Allen established career highs in points (7) and rebounds (5), Wade Morgan converted the first of two free throw attempts for his second career point while Jack Ryan knocked down his first career three-pointer … Stanford and South Dakota State were hooking up for the first time on the hardwood … The Jackrabbits fell to 0-11 in the state of California as a Division I team, including 0-4 this year … Stanford returns to action on Saturday, Dec. 14, hosting UC Davis at 5 p.m. in the second half of a double header after the women square off against Gonzaga.
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Stanford Head Coach Johnny Dawkins
“Well, I thought we got off to a very good start. Right from the beginning our guys were ready to go, and that’s something that we had talked about, seeing if we could start games better. I thought we got momentum early and were able to continue to stay on the attack. I thought Chasson really led us, in the first half especially. I thought Anthony Brown has given us a big lift. He’s been playing very consistent for us, and doing more than just scoring the basketball. He’s defending, he’s rebounding — things that we need. So I was really happy with all of their effort, and it was a good way to bounce back from a tough loss we had a few days ago.”
“As you can see, we’re playing a bit more up-tempo this year, but it’s all dependent on how you defend. When you get stops, you’re able to run, especially when you secure the rebound. It gives you opportunities to get out and play the way we think we’re capable of, and our guys have shown to be very efficient with those opportunities.”
“I thought there were some things we need to clean up, but we’ve had such a grueling schedule, it’s been difficult to go deep into our bench. So this gave us an opportunity, because of the lead, to really look at some kids that we’ve seen in practice but hadn’t had an opportunity to get in games. I thought they all came in and gave us some good contributions. I’m sure they had some nervous energy and some of the plays didn’t go their way because of that, but they’re going to be fine. They’ll settle down and have the poise that will be required to be successful.”
“Off for a couple weeks now, but it gives some of our guys a chance to get healthy. We have a number of guys who are banged up, but this break will be good for our guys in that regard. We’ll give them two days off. Starting tomorrow they’ll have a few days off. Then we’ll give them two more days off next week as well while they’re preparing for finals. And guys will have to miss time because of finals or studying. So I’m not sure how many days we’ll have our entire team together during the course of these next two weeks, but the guys that are there and are capable of coming in, we’re ready to work with them.”
“The win feels really good, but it was well-deserved. I think we’ve worked really hard the past couple days after we came back from Brooklyn, and really tried to focus on what our identity was. Making stops on the defensive end and getting better. We came out focused and aggressive on the defensive end, and it worked well for us tonight.”
“We treat every opponent as equal, you know. Anybody can beat us. You can get beat any night. And you’ve got to take every opponent seriously. And that’s what we did tonight. We know that South Dakota State is a really good team and they’ll be good again this year.”
“We were just trying to stay aggressive on the defensive end, getting up in passing lanes and making sure we make it hard for the defense to score. And I think we did that very well in the first half.”
South Dakota State Head Coach Scott Nagy
“We didn't learn anything tonight. Really, what I feel like is that we wasted Stanford's time. We didn't help them get any better, either. We have a lot of guys who are struggling internally and turning inward; that's why they played the way they did tonight.”
“When people struggle and go through difficult times, they look inward and feel sorry for themselves. Self-pity is about the most disgusting thing for any of us, really. You can't get any better when you have self pity. What you need to do is ask yourself: "Why, and what's wrong, and what can I do to make my teammates better?"
“It could be a great opportunity for our basketball team. We're a better team than we showed tonight. We're a better program than this, and we've worked hard to build our program and establish it. We should have been embarrassed by our loss at UC Santa Barbara. I would have bet my last dollar than we would have played better tonight. As a coach, I'm trying to figure out why we've had two games like this in a row.”