Dec 19, 2001
By RICK EYMER
Associated Press Writer
STANFORD, Calif. - Casey Jacobsen finally felt good about his offensive output, and it showed.
Jacobsen scored 25 points on 7-of-12 shooting as No. 13 Stanford beat Belmont 97-63 in the first round of the Stanford Invitational on Tuesday night.
Jacobsen shot 50 percent or better for the second straight game, something he failed to do in his first four games.
"This was the day I've been looking for," he said. "I shot well in practice and my confidence level was high."
Curtis Borchardt added 19 points as the Cardinal (5-1) improved to 37-1 at home against nonconference opponents in the past six years.
Wes Burtner scored 19 points for the Bruins, who lost their fourth straight on the road. Adam Mark added 15.
"Stanford was every bit as good as we thought," said Burtner. "Probably a little better."
Borchardt played sparingly in the second half and had a 10-game streak of double figures in rebounding stopped. He finished with seven as the Cardinal outrebounded Belmont, 50-23.
Stanford will face Portland State in the championship game Wednesday night. The Vikings beat Santa Clara 76-63.
The Cardinal are seeking their seventh consecutive title in the tournament and 13th in 18 seasons.
"Stanford is by far the best team I've ever coached against," said Belmont coach Rick Byrd. "We knew realistically we didn't have much of a chance to win, but the only way to get better is to play teams like this."
Belmont (4-4), in its fifth season in Division I and first in the newly formed Atlantic Sun Conference, dropped to 0-2 against Pac-10 teams and 0-3 against teams ranked in the Top 25.
Jacobsen, who played just 22 minutes, scored 14 points as the Cardinal went on a 21-2 run in the first five minutes of the second half to open their biggest lead of the game at 73-32.
"Shooting is shooting," Jacobsen said. "Once you get into a groove, that's when you need to take advantage."
He shot 6-for-8 from 3-point range.
"Casey looked like the Casey of old," Stanford coach Mike Montgomery said. "He was pure from deep."
Belmont, which has lost 30 of its last 35 road games, never got closer than 30 after that.
After Burtner scored the first basket of the game for the Bruins, it was all Stanford.
The Cardinal went on a 24-10 run - with Borchardt scoring seven of his points - over a seven-minute stretch midway through the first half to grab a double-digit lead. They continued to extend their advantage to 52-30 by halftime, scoring 10 of the last 12 points.
Belmont sank its first three shots, but then missed 17 of the next 23 while the Cardinal shot 50 percent in the first 20 minutes.
Teyo Johnson, who is also a wide receiver on the Seattle Bowl-bound Stanford football team, had a half-hour between football practice and his required reporting time for basketball. A 6-7 power forward, he entered the game with 4:13 left in the first half.