Moraga, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Stephen Holt scored a game-high 21 points, leading all five starters in double figures, as the Gaels of Saint Mary's-CA defeated the San Francisco Dons, 88-73, in West Coast Conference action at McKeon Pavilion.
James Walker III accounted for 17 points, Brad Waldow 16, Kerry Carter 14 points and Beau Levesque 13 before fouling out as the Gaels (13-5, 3-2 WCC) won for the third time in four games.
The Dons (11-7, 4-2) entered the weekend tied with Gonzaga for the top spot in the conference standings, but came up short this time around as Avry Holmes produced 17 points, Kruize Pinkins and Cole Dickerson 16 each and Mark Tollefsen 13 points in the losing cause.
While the Gaels were connecting on 53.6 percent from the field in the first half, USF made good on a total of just nine field goals, not to mention 2-of-9 behind the 3-point line. Both squad converted 8-of-10 at the free-throw line in the frame, affording SMC a 43-28 advantage at the break.
In the second half the Gaels kept their distance by knocking down not just 60.0 percent from the floor, but 6-of-8 on the perimeter and 21-of-27 at the free-throw line.
The Gaels, who turned the ball over just six times, have now won 17 straight games in the series with USF, 11 in a row versus the Dons at home.