The California Golden Bears men’s basketball team just shocked the Stanford Cardinal by winning 64-59 at Maples Pavilion. Despite their 8-22 record, the Bears have won three straight contests including their first conference road victory this season and head into the Pac-12 Tournament playing with house money. Stanford drops to 15-15 having lost a rivalry game at home to a Cal team that seemed rudderless prior to their last pair of home games.
In the first half, Cal shot out to a 19-2 advantage thanks to some extremely hot shooting by Connor Vanover and a struggling Stanford offense. Paris Austin shot 5-11 early on to rack up 10 points of his own. Meanwhile, only KZ Okpala distinguished himself for the home team. Matt Bradley banked in a long three at the buzzer to make the Cal lead 37-24.
Stanford was woeful from three-point range, as even their 4-28 mark was helped by a few late makes to keep the game close. Other than Okapala, only Josh Sharma ended with double digit points for the Cardinal. In fact, the Bears allowed a 10-0 run against them before Vanover converted a late three-point play with a slam dunk to establish some breathing room. Meanwhile, Cal’s balanced attack included double figure nights for Vanover, Bradley, and Austin while Sueing chipped in with 9 points and 10 boards. Overall, it was a huge game for the freshman big man and Bay Area bragging rights in general.