No. 13 California tops Detroit 95-61, moves to 2-0Nov 12, 2009 - 7:07 AM By JANIE McCAULEY AP Sports Writer
BERKELEY, Calif.(AP) -- Mike Montgomery doesn't want to see California let other teams hang around. Detroit did just that for longer than Montgomery liked.
Theo Robertson scored 15 of his 22 points in the second half, hitting consecutive 3-pointers during a decisive run, and the 13th-ranked Golden Bears won for the 33rd time in their last 35 non-conference home games by beating Detroit 95-61 in the 2K Sports Classic on Wednesday night.
Jerome Randle had 16 of his 22 points in the first half, Patrick Christopher added 18 points and five rebounds, and Cal shot 48.3 percent.
It took a while, but Cal eventually pulled away. The Golden Bears (2-0) led by as many as 15 in the first half before letting Detroit back in it.
"We've got to get the killer instinct," Montgomery said. "We've got to be able to put a foot on the throat when we get a run going. Once you earn a lead, 15, we can't give that back."
Chase Simon had 17 points, Eli Holman added 15 and Thomas Kennedy 14 for Detroit, which lost its 15th straight game to a ranked opponent since a win over Butler on Jan. 10, 2002. The Titans (0-1) faced a Pac-10 team for the first time since they were a No. 12 seed and upset fifth-seeded UCLA 56-53 in the first round of the 1999 NCAA tournament.
For the second time in three nights, the Bears had to work hard. Cal held off Murray State 75-70 in its opener Monday night, then a scrappy Detroit team in the Titans' season opener.
Randle made all 12 of his free throws as Cal shot 30 for 35 from the line. The Bears are picked to win the Pac-10 after the program's impressive turnaround last season in Montgomery's first year in Berkeley that concluded with an NCAA tournament berth.
"We're not going to get anything easy playing against teams now because they know about us three," Randle said of himself, Christopher and Robertson.
Christopher scored five straight points followed by Robertson's six in a row during an 11-0 run after Detroit got to 50-44.
It gets tougher from here for the Bears. They head East next week to face Syracuse at Madison Square Garden on Thursday night.
"Obviously, playing in the Garden is going to be a big-time atmosphere," said Robertson, who will make his first trip to the Big Apple.
Markhuri Sanders-Frison, the only newcomer to Cal's starting lineup, contributed six points and six rebounds but was in foul trouble all game. He was whistled for his fourth foul with 14:53 remaining and went to the bench - which made it tough for Cal to establish an advantage in the paint. The 6-foot-7 center transferred from South Plains Community College in Texas.
Simon's baseline 3 just before halftime pulled his team back within single digits heading into the break and Detroit used an 11-0 run spanning halftime to get back in the game. The Titans got to 40-36 on Kennedy's basket at the 18:40 mark of the second half, then the Bears answered with an 8-0 spurt.
Junior forward Xavier Keeling made his highly anticipated return for Detroit after missing all but seven games last season because of a foot injury. He had six points, eight rebounds and three assists.
The Titans haven't beaten a ranked team on the road since a win at No. 8 Marquette on Feb. 6, 1979, and the team's slow start on offense didn't help the cause at Haas Pavilion.
Cal started the game 7 for 17 to 5 of 18 by Detroit, which shot 4 of 18 from 3-point range.
"We have a lot of new players and I thought Cal really hung together," Detroit coach Ray McCallum said. "We came out of the locker room the second half and played with some confidence and got some things to go for us and cut the lead. They got it together and made a run and didn't stop running."
Jamal Boykin grabbed 10 rebounds as the Bears held a 46-31 edge on the boards.
Randle's points moved him past Doug True and into 17th place on Cal's career scoring list at 1,224.
Detroit is 2-14 since 1935 when starting the season on the road - and hasn't captured a road opener since winning at Toledo in 1977 when Dick Vitale coached the program.
This marked only the second meeting ever between these schools and first since Cal's 32-28 win at Detroit in 1937-38.
The Classic benefits Coaches vs. Cancer.
- NCAA BB
CALIFORNIA 95 FINAL
Nov 12 1:13 AM
- NCAA BB
CALIFORNIA 93 0:00 LEFT, 2ND HALF
Nov 12 1:13 AM
- NCAA BB
CALIFORNIA 40 HALFTIME
Nov 11 11:59 PM
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