Fields leads Stanford past James Madison |

Fields leads Stanford past James Madison

STANFORD – A flurry of activity in the closing seconds of the first half may have been the catalyst for better things in the second half for Stanford.

It also could have been Cardinal coach Johnny Dawkins’ halftime talk that caused a reversal of fortune.

Landry Fields scored 24 points to help Stanford end a three-game losing streak with an 80-76 victory over James Madison on Tuesday night.

Jeremy Green added 15 points for the Cardinal (6-6), who have won five of seven home games. Andrew Zimmerman matched his career high with 14 points and Drew Shiller had 12.

“I can’t remember the exact words, but we got the meaning of his talk,” Zimmerman said. “We needed to pick it up both on the defensive end and rebounding. Those were two big keys that sealed the game for us.”

Denzel Bowles had as many rebounds (11) as Stanford did as a team at the end of the first 20 minutes. The Dukes outshot Stanford and held the halftime advantage despite committing 15 of their 26 turnovers in the first half.

Bowles was held without a rebound in the second half and the Cardinal outrebounded James Madison by 10 after halftime.

“James Madison forced us to make adjustments,” Dawkins said. “We did a good job of that, and we’ll get better as a result.”

Julius Wells scored a season-high 29 points, 23 in the second half, for the Dukes (6-5), who had a two-game winning streak snapped. Bowles added 22 points and now has 97 in his four games with James Madison.

“Wells played about as good as I’ve seen him play,” Dukes coach Matt Brady said. “He was one guy who had no lack of energy, that’s for sure. We really had a good opportunity to win. (But) we made 26 turnovers and gave up 19 offensive boards. Those are two numbers we’ve been working on, but we’re not getting any better with them.”

Fields scored 15 of his points in the first half, but Stanford trailed 36-34 at intermission.

Wells was 5 of 10 from 3-point range.

James Madison senior guard Pierre Curtis did not start in a game he played for the first time since Feb. Feb. 16, 2008, and just the second time in his career.

Curtis had a 51-game consecutive starting streak snapped as he nears the school record for most career starts. He’s two shy of matching the mark with 102.

Bowles, a transfer from Texas A&M, was playing in his fourth game with the Dukes since becoming eligible on Dec. 12. The 6-foot-10 junior made his first eight shots and was 6 of 6 from the foul line.

The game was tied with 5:38 to play before Stanford scored eight straight points for a 68-60 edge with 2:38 left, the biggest lead for either team.

The Cardinal held on from there.

“We made far too many unforced turnovers,” Wells said. “They hurt us on the offensive boards. They were better than we thought, but we definitely should have won this game.”

Stanford scored two quick baskets in the final 24 seconds of the first half to draw within 36-34 at intermission. Curtis tried to save the ball from going out of bound but knocked it to Fields, wide open under the basket.

Another turnover gave the Cardinal possession at halfcourt with just under 2 seconds left. Shiller, a high school quarterback, sent a perfect pass to Zimmerman for an easy layup at the buzzer.

“I’ve never been a wide receiver,” Zimmerman said. “When I played football I was a quarterback. We knew they would switch out on Fields, and it was a matter of finishing the play.”

James Madison scored the game’s first nine points, seven coming from Darren White.

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