Pepperdine defeated Santa Clara, 64-50, Friday night at Firestone Fieldhouse in Malibu and inched closer to a home-court advantage in the West Coast Athletic Conference tournament.
Wave senior forward Eric White scored 24 points, and teammate Craig Davis added 17, all in the first half, as Pepperdine tied Santa Clara for fifth place in the conference.
The top four WCAC teams will play at home in the first round of the tournament Feb. 28.
Pepperdine, 10-15 overall, improved to 5-7 in the WCAC. The Broncos fell to 14-12 and 5-7.
Pepperdine was in control throughout as Santa Clara led only once, at 2-0, and fell behind, 39-25, at intermission.
Davis threw up a 45-footer that went in at the halftime buzzer. It was the third of his three-point baskets in the period.
The Broncos scored six straight points at the start of the second half to pull within eight at 39-31. But that was as close as they got.
Santa Clara shot a dismal 32.5% (14 of 43) from the field and committed 22 turnovers. Pepperdine hit 24 of 55 shots (43.6%) and had 19 turnovers
A total of 43 personal fouls were called in the game, 23 on the Waves.
Davis was 1 for 10 from the field when Santa Clara won at home in January, humiliating the Waves, 76-50.
But the redshirt freshman made up for that off night in a hurry on Saturday night.
In the first half, he hit 6 of 8 from the floor, including 3 of 4 three pointers, and sank both of his foul shots. But he took only one more shot the rest of the night--and missed it.
Pepperdine Coach Jim Harrick said that Davis "came off the bench and gave us a real lift in the last seven minutes of the first half."
But Harrick said that White, who scored 12 in each half and also grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds, "was the biggest player on the floor."
He said that after the first five minutes of the game, White "played superb defense, was excellent in rebounding and gave us basket after basket."