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USF men’s basketball proves to be no match for Stanford

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Chase Foster drives against Stanford. (Courtesy USF Athletics)

A 23-5 run by Stanford proved to be too much for the University of San Francisco men’s basketball team to overcome on Sunday afternoon.

The Stanford Cardinal won, 71-59.

USF shot just 8-for-30 from 3-point range and struggled to stop Stanford’s tandem of Reid Travis and Josh Sharma.

That onslaught allowed Stanford (6-6) to close the first half with a 38-21 lead, and the Cardinal stretched that lead all the way to 25 five minutes into the second half. The Dons did manage to get to within 8 points with 1:42 left, a remarkable turnaround for a team that at one point looked like it wasn’t even going to score 50 points, but the early deficit proved to be too big of an obstacle.

Chase Foster and Souley Boum caught fire in the second half to get the Dons within single digits, and Taavi Jurkatamm played his best defensive game of the year in an effort to slow down Travis, but Stanford managed to avoid catastrophe in the final minutes behind strong play from Oscar Da Silva.

Da Silva’s 3-pointer stopped a 13-4 USF run, and his putback on a third-chance less than a minute later restored a 15-point Stanford lead. He finished with seven points, all coming in the second half.

Boum and Foster each scored all 14 of their points in the second half for San Francisco (6-4), but the rest of the team made just nine shots from the field all night.

“We went smaller, forced some turnovers and finally made some shots,” said head coach Kyle Smith on the team’s late push.

Travis tied his career high with 29 points on 11-of-18 shooting and finished two rebounds shy of a double-double. Sharma finished with 13 points, his highest output on the season. He entered the day averaging just 3.7 points per game.

The Dons return to action on Tuesday night for a 7 p.m. home contest with Radford.

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