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Stanford vs. Arizona State: Tree Up, Tree Down

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There was a lot to like about Stanford's 85-65 win over Arizona State in the first round of the Pac-12 Tournament last night. Not the least of which is it sets up a quarterfinal showdown with Cal today. Here's a look at three good things and two bad things from the game.

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Chasson Randle

One of the main reasons I don't want this season to end is I don't want to have to wait until November to watch Chasson Randle light it up again. The freshman was unconscious in the first half, scoring 27 points -- a tournament record for a half -- on only eight shots. Randle played only 10 minutes in the second half and finished with a career-high 30 points.

Since being held under 10 points in back-to-back games at Washington and California at the end of January, Randle has been on fire. He shot 56% from beyond the arc and averaged 15.7 points over the last 11 games. You can bet he'll be the focal point of Cal's defensive effort today.

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Free Throw Shooting

Hark! Stanford had a good night at the charity stripe. Buoyed by Randle's 10-for-12 showing and Dwight Powells five makes in six attempts, the Cardinal shot 23-for-29(79%) as a team. Granted, they weren't attempting the free throws in high stress situations, but it's a start. Getting to the line a lot -- and making a healthy percentage of the shots when you do -- helps avoid turning games that should be comfortable wins into nailbiters.

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Rest

Arizona State showed some life in the second half, but this game was over at the break, with Stanford holding a 50-30 advantage. That meant some extended rest for guys like Randle and Josh Owens, who was ineffective in his 15 minutes, but should have plenty of energy to bounce back against the Bears.

Steve Physioc and Marquess Johnson

I'd probably lose my mind, too, if I had to sit through four consecutive games of Pac-12 basketball, but man, they were bad.


Josh Owens

Owens has six points on 1-for-8 shooting in his last two games.

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