California 65, Stanford 62
BERKELEY, Calif. (AP)—Leon Powe scored a career-high 32 points and California survived a late flurry from Stanford to win 65-62 Thursday night, snapping a six-game losing streak to its Bay Area rivals.
The Golden Bears (15-6, 9-3 Pac-10) played with poise down the stretch, making all six free throws in the final minute and stopping Stanford’s last-ditch effort. After Ayinde Ubaka’s two foul shots made it 65-62 with 13.5 seconds left, Stanford (12-8, 8-4) tried to tie it with a 3-pointer.
Cal coach Ben Braun chose not to order his team to foul and Ubaka knocked the ball away from Hernandez and into the hands of Eric Vierneisel, who ran out the clock to give the Bears their fifth straight win.
Cal students, part of the first sellout at Haas Pavilion since undefeated Stanford visited two years ago, rushed the floor after the Bears’ first win against Stanford since 2003. Cal had lost 16 of 18 in the rivalry.
Cal took sole possession of second place in the conference with the win, a game behind UCLA, and Stanford dropped into a third. Both teams are also fighting for at-large berths in the NCAA tournament.
Powe scored six straight points down the stretch for California, including two free throws with 32.5 seconds left to make it 61-57. After Hernandez made two free throws for Stanford, Ubaka made two more for Cal to make it 63-59.
Matt Haryasz, playing with goggles after being poked in the eye last weekend at Oregon State, responded with a 3-pointer to cut it to 1 with 14.4 seconds left.
But Ubaka, who finished with 18 points, added two more free throws for the final margin. Powe and Ubaka combined for Cal’s last 20 points over the final 13:15 of the game.
Haryasz, who did not start because of the injury, led Stanford with 18 points and Hernandez added 13. The Cardinal had won five straight and now must go on the road against No. 5 Gonzaga on Saturday.
Cal started the game slowly making just four of its first 16 shots. But Ubaka found his stroke late in the first half and the Bears made 10 of their next 15 from the field, leading to a 13-4 run to open the second half to make it 40-29.
Hernandez hit a 3-pointer to end the spurt and start one for Stanford. Haryasz scored six straight points for the Cardinal during a 14-6 run that cut the lead to 46-43.
Cal went more than seven minutes without a field goal, but remained in the lead because of their ability to get to the foul line. Powe went 5-for-6 from the line during the stretch and Ubaka made two free throws after being fouled by Mitch Johnson on a 3-point attempt, making it 52-46. Ubaka’s pull-up jumper ended the drought and made it 54-46 with about 6 minutes to go.
Cal finished 23-for-28 from the line after making just 11 of 24 in last month’s 75-61 loss at Stanford.
Powe dominated inside, scoring 15 points in the first half alone, including three emphatic dunks to help the Bears take a 27-25 lead at the break.
Cal played without starting guard Omar Wilkes, who sprained his ankle in practice Tuesday and was replaced in the lineup by Theo Robertson. Robertson hit two early 3-pointers and finished with eight points.
Cal turned the ball over only four times and has just 41 in its five-game winning streak.