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B. Lopez, Goods helps Stanford win defensive struggle

Dec 30, 2007 - 3:41 AM PALO ALTO, California (Ticker) -- In its worst offensive output of the season, Stanford had just enough to defeat Fresno State.

Brook Lopez had 19 points and a season-high 12 rebounds and Anthony Goods added 16 points as the 22nd-ranked Cardinal won the defensive struggle over the Bulldogs, 55-48, on Saturday.

It was the seventh straight win for Stanford (11-1), which played its final non-conference game of the campaign. The Cardinal opens Pac-10 play on Thursday at home against No. 5 UCLA.

Stanford never could pull away from Fresno State, leading by single digits for most of the game as the Cardinal shot just 40 percent (20-of-50) from the field.

"I thought we were very patient and for the most part didn't take too many bad shots," Bulldogs coach Steve Cleveland said. "For the most part, we played at the tempo we needed to play and kept ourselves in the ballgame. They got some separation and we had some good looks the last four minutes but we just didn't make them."

The Cardinal relied heavily on Lopez throughout the game as the 7-foot sophomore scored at least 19 points for the third straight game. Lopez had missed the first nine games of the season due to academic reasons.

Stanford, which failed to score at least 60 points for the first time this season, trailed, 13-6, early in the first half before holding Fresno State scoreless for more than 8 1/2 minutes.

The Cardinal scored 13 consecutive points - as the Bulldogs missed nine straight shots - to take a 19-13 lead with under four minutes left in the half.

Stanford never trailed again as Lopez scored eight of his 14 first-half points during the run and the Cardinal held a 26-21 lead at the break.

Fresno State had cut the deficit to 26-24 early in the second half, but Stanford responded with seven straight points to take a 33-24 advantage with 12:27 remaining.

The Bulldogs never got closer than five the rest of the way and trailed by as many as 13 with 2:32 to play.

Stanford shot just 37 percent (10-of-23) in the second half as it won the eighth straight meeting against Fresno State. The Bulldogs also held a 35-32 edge in rebounding, becoming the first team to outrebound the Cardinal this season.

"Most of the shots Stanford took were contested and that's a good thing," Cleveland said. "I thought our defensive efforts were really solid and rebounding was solid."

Kevin Bell scored 16 points to lead Fresno State (7-6), which shot 39 percent (21-of-54) from the field, including just 3-of-15 from the arc.

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    FRESNO ST 21 27 48
    STANFORD (22) 26 29 55 FINAL

    Dec 29 6:54 PM

    FRESNO ST 21

    Dec 29 5:52 PM