Cal Hammers Princeton 81-60

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BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) - Princeton's soft 1-3-1 zone was just what California's Jamal Boykin wanted to see.

With the Golden Bears roster thinned out due to injury and illness, Boykin filled a huge scoring void by matching his career high of 22 points while leading Cal to an easy 81-60 win over the Tigers on Sunday.

"When they play zone, the middle of the zone is usually open so I felt we took advantage of that with mid-range shooting," said Boykin, who went 11 of 14 from the floor. "Mid-range jump shooting has always been a big part of my game and tonight I was able to get a lot of opportunities to shoot that shot."

Jerome Randle also had 22 while leading the Golden Bears (4-2) to their second straight lopsided win after falling out of the Associated Press Top 25 last week.

Randle, who also had a season-high nine assists, repeatedly burned the Tigers' defense with his speed and shooting. He made two 3-pointers and scored on a trio of fastbreaks in the first half, then added another 3 early in the second half to give Cal a 48-29 lead.

Boykin's performance was unexpected. The Duke transfer came into the game averaging just 9.2 points but had no problem getting his offense going against Princeton, even when the Tigers switched to a man-to-man defense in the second half.

"I love the mid-range jump shot," Boykin said. "Being able to find holes where I could get an open shot, definitely I felt the zone worked to my favor."

Patrick Saunders scored 14 points and Ian Hummer had 13 for Princeton. The Tigers (2-3) fell behind by 15 points midway through the first half and couldn't recover.

"We've got stuff to work on," Princeton coach Sydney Johnson said. "We've got to pay attention to the little things. We knew what we were getting into and knew that we would need to be very good in terms of execution, and we weren't."

Max Zhang, Cal's 7-foot sophomore center, matched his career high with seven points and had five rebounds and a steal in his first career start as coach Mike Montgomery adjusted his lineup due to illness and injury.

The Bears were without two starters, forward Theo Robertson (foot) and center Markhuri Sanders-Frison (ill), while backup guard Jorge Gutierrez (ill) received an IV before the game. Randle and fellow starting guard Patrick Christopher had also missed practice time this week due to the flu.

It didn't seem to slow Cal's offense down much.

Boykin and Randle combined for 29 points in the first half then teamed up for the Bears' first 11 points in the second half, when Cal led by as much as 21.

Zhang also gave the Bears a lift. The lanky center scored on a pair of dunks and blocked a shot by Princeton center Pawel Buczak in the first half. Zhang also helped hold the 6-foot-11 Buczak scoreless for the first time this season.

"We asked our kids off the bench to give us a hand," Montgomery said. "I thought Max was really good. His size caused them some problems and they were certainly aware of him."

Sophomore guard Doug Davis, who led the Tigers in scoring last season, had 12 points in his second straight start after coming off the bench for the team's first three games.

Princeton was held to eight rebounds in the first half and had just two offensive rebounds overall.

Randle had eight points and two assists as Cal opened the game with a 20-5 run. He also helped stifle the Tigers point guards, who were unable to get the team's backdoor offense in rhythm.

Princeton missed eight of its first nine shots and had four turnovers in the first nine minutes but made a brief run to pull within 39-25 at the half. Hummer made all five of his shot attempts in the first half while the rest of the Tigers went 4 for 16.