No. 23 California 72, Austin Peay 55
Mike Montgomery understood why his team had a tough time matching its first-half energy over the final 20 minutes considering California had already built a 27-point lead.
''It's probably human nature, you're up 27 and don't have that same intensity,'' Montgomery said. ''We've been a little bit lax.''
Jorge Gutierrez had 14 points, six rebounds and three assists and the 23rd-ranked Golden Bears jumped out to a comfortable early cushion on the way to a 72-55 rout of cold-shooting Austin Peay on Tuesday night.
It gets tougher from here for Cal. Next up is a matchup with Georgia in the CBE Classic semifinals Monday night in Kansas City, Mo.
''We know what we're up against. We're going to have to be better for longer,'' Montgomery said.
Harper Kamp added 12 points and nine boards for the Bears (3-0), who just missed a chance to begin the season with three straight 20-point victories for the first time since the 1952-53 team started with four.
Gutierrez and Kamp each scored six of their points in the opening six minutes as Cal (3-0) built a 17-2 lead and wasn't challenged the rest of the way by the overmatched Governors, who did outscore the Bears 42-32 in the second half against mostly reserves. That allowed Montgomery to regularly substitute and try out different lineup combinations on a night a half-dozen professional scouts turned out at Haas Pavilion.
Josh Terry scored 16 points to lead the Governors (0-2), who play their first six games away from home and eight of the first 10. They shot 37.1 percent and missed their initial 13 3-point tries before Herdie Lawrence connected with 12:56 remaining. Austin Peay also got outrebounded 36-32 and reached the free throw line only eight times as Cal went 15 for 21 from the line to overcome a 1-for-12 showing from 3-point range.
Freshman David Kravish came off the bench to make 6 of 7 field-goal attempts for 12 points and his first double-digit scoring performance, while Brandon Smith scored 11 points.
''The last couple of games we've come out with a strong intensity, from the gate we've come out with a strong punch,'' Smith said. ''Coach said in the locker room the second half should match the intensity of the first half. It's good we had some money in the bank there. We lost the second half and we still won.''
Allen Crabbe, last season's Pac-10 Freshman of the Year coming off 20-point performances in each of his first two games, was limited to five points on 2-for-12 shooting.
''Allen's not going to have a game like that,'' Montgomery said. ''I don't know the next time that's going to happen. He's a good shooter. That's an aberration. There's no question we're going to need him.''
It hardly mattered this time. Cal improved to 23-2 in non-conference games at home in Haas under Montgomery.
The Bears shot 52.8 percent, their second straight game going over 50 percent from the floor, and received contributions from most of the roster. They are picked to finish second in the Pac-12 behind UCLA.
''We look at being picked second - anything we can do to get a little chip on our shoulder I think is good,'' Kamp said.
Austin Peay, the school from Clarksville, Tenn., played its first game in the state of California during the 22-year tenure of coach Dave Loos, the winningest coach in the Ohio Valley Conference. Loos is the lone Division I basketball coach also serving as athletic director.
While he has four of five starters from last season on a team favored to win the OVC, senior center John Fraley didn't make the trip after sustaining a concussion in the season-opening 80-71 loss Friday at Middle Tennessee. That hurt the Governors' chances to match up and battle for boards in the paint with Kamp and 6-foot-10 Richard Solomon.
''He's doing better. They have a list of things, a checklist, and he made really significant improvement over the last 24 hours,'' Loos said. ''It always hurts our rebounding. He gets us a few points down low but it's his rebounding.''
Austin Peay began the game 1 for 7 while Cal hit six of its first seven shots. The Governors were 2 for 15 at the 7:32 mark of the first half and went 0 for 9 from long range to trail 40-13 at halftime.
They shot only 39 percent in their season opener.
This was the first meeting between the schools and only the third matchup Austin Peay has had with current members of the Pac-12. Loos' first game as Governors head coach was a 122-80 loss to Arizona in 1990.