APU: Troy Leaf 21 pts, 5 ast, 1 stl
AAU: Alexis Moore 24 pts, 10 reb, 5 stl
Azusa Pacific men’s basketball cruised to an 87-63 win over Academy of Art at home Monday night, extending the Cougars’ winning streak to 14 games, the sixth best in program history.
A 16-2 run from the Cougars over eight minutes turned a 6-6 score into a 22-8 lead with 8:20 remaining in the first half. The Knights were unable to climb within single digits of the Cougars and entered the second half down 33-22.
APU maintained the double-digit lead with ease, controlling the game by 20+ points for more than 12 minutes of the 20 minute period.
Senior guard Troy Leaf led the Cougars in scoring with 21 points, followed by junior guard Bruce English with 10. The bench produced 42 points, with each Cougar who entered the game contributing at least two points.
“This is where we hoped we would be,” APU head coach Justin Leslie said. “This is a group we’ve been building and planning for years, multiple recruiting classes to get to this point.”
APU out-rebounded AAU 45-28 with 19 second-chance points and shot 50 percent from 3-point range.
Academy of Art’s Alexis Moore led the game with 24 points while grabbing 10 rebounds. Aaron Anderson was the Knights’ second-highest scorer with 13 points.
APU improves to 15-1 (8-0 PacWest), the fourth-best season start in program history. The team will travel to St. George, Utah, this Saturday for a matchup against the Dixie State Red Storm, the only PacWest opponent the Cougars have yet to beat since joining the conference in the 2012 season.
“Now it gets real. The top teams in the conference – we’ll be playing each other,” Leslie said. “This is where, ultimately, the season will be defined.”