BERKELEY, Calif.(AP) -- Leon Powe had another impressive
performance in his return from knee surgery.
In his second game back after missing all of last season, Powe
scored 26 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead California to an
89-75 victory over Akron on Saturday night.
Powe, who missed the first four games of the season with a
stress fracture in his right foot, dominated play on both ends of
the court as the Golden Bears (5-1) won their fifth straight.
"Our game plan was to go at the big guys and get them in foul
trouble," Powe said. "Big guys don't like to play defense."
Powe's 12 made free throws were four more than the Zips
Romeo Travis, Akron's leading scorer, began the night guarding
Powe, but quickly picked up three fouls and was benched for the
final 15:12 of a scoreless first half.
Akron coach Keith Dambrot was called for a technical foul
arguing about the third foul.
"I didn't swear," Dambrot said. "I didn't like our best
player being called for touch fouls. Our margin of error wasn't
great without Romeo."
Travis scored his first basket 15 seconds into the second half,
but picked up his fourth personal on an attempted dunk by Powe and
was taken out with 17:18 to play. The Zips struggled without the
6-foot-7 junior, losing the first-half battle of the boards 17-7.
Cal took down eight offensive rebounds alone in the first half
and led the previously undefeated Zips (2-1) 45-36 at the break.
Theo Robertson gave Cal a 62-49 lead with 12:50 to play on the
front end of a fast break.
Dambrot was forced to put Travis back on the floor and he
responded with two quick baskets that helped cut the advantage to
64-48 with 10:20 remaining. Travis fouled out with 5 minutes
remaining with six points -- 15 below his season average.
By this time, the Zips were in a zone defense designed to keep
the ball from going inside to Powe. In his first game back
Wednesday, Powe matched his career high with 27 points and took
down 10 rebounds in a victory over San Jose State.