STANFORD, Calif. (AP) — Kaylee Johnson hardly considered this a strong night on the boards. The stat sheet told a different story for the Stanford freshman: 22 rebounds.
Amber Orrange scored 20 points, Johnson posted her second 22-rebound performance, and the seventh-ranked Cardinal returned from their annual two-week break for final exams to beat Santa Clara 82-43 on Sunday night.
"She's all over the boards, all over the place," Orrange said about Johnson.
Orrange shot 7 for 12 with two 3-pointers as Stanford (6-2) played its West Coast Conference neighbor at Maples Pavilion in the first of two warmups before Hall of Fame coach Tara VanDerveer takes her team to Knoxville to face Tennessee on Saturday.
Nici Gilday scored 17 points on 8-of-12 shooting for Santa Clara (5-3), which lost its seventh straight in the series with Stanford.
The young Broncos are rebuilding under first-year coach JR Payne after losing six players who accounted for more than half of the team's scoring production.
"A 40-point loss is a major reality check no matter who you're playing against, so that stings," Payne said.
Bonnie Samuelson scored all of her 11 points off the bench in the first half to help Stanford pull away en route to its third straight victory since losing to then-No. 11 North Carolina 70-54 in the opener at the Rainbow Wahine Classic on Nov. 28.
Reigning WCC Player of the Week Gilday, Santa Clara's leading scorer who averaged 18.1 points per game coming in, was the only Broncos player with more than four points.
Stanford played without forward Taylor Greenfield, who sat out with a left foot injury as a precaution. She is expected to return Wednesday at Chattanooga and then play at No. 11 Tennessee.
Johnson did her part to create opportunities.
"I didn't think I rebounded well tonight," she said. "Why not crash the boards? I think it's fun."
Stanford freshman Brittany McPhee, who missed seven weeks early in the season with a stress reaction in her foot, scored a season-best 11 points. The Cardinal improved to 29-4 against the Broncos and 14-2 at home.
"Coming back after two weeks I thought our team played with a lot of energy," said VanDerveer, who is running a more up-tempo attack after years of the triangle offense. "Bonnie gave us a big lift in the first half. We had some different people helping us. ... We need more scoring and more production from our post game."
When Santa Clara went cold in the first half, Stanford capitalized. The Broncos missed five straight shots and 8 of 9 late in the first half as the Cardinal hit 7 of 9 and got a three-point play by Karlie Samuelson that made it 27-17. Stanford used a 17-2 run during one stretch for a 40-21 lead at halftime.
Johnson's rebound total is tied for the third best in program history. Only Chiney Ogwumike, this year's No. 1 pick in the WNBA draft, had multiple 20-rebound performances with four, and Johnson now has two through her first eight college games.
"Kaylee's in good company," VanDerveer said.
Since starting the break for final exams during the 1999-2000 season, Stanford is 13-3 in its first game back from tests and has won 13 in a row. ... The Cardinal, who led the nation in 3-point percentage at 43.4, went just 4 for 19 from behind the arc (21 percent). "We told our team when they're uncontested from 3 it's like shooting a layup," Payne said. ... Stanford is 111-3 on its home floor since the 2007-08 season. ... Santa Clara played at Stanford for the first time since Nov. 29, 2006.
Santa Clara: The Broncos get another nonconference test from a Pac-12 opponent Thursday at Oregon, facing a familiar face in former Gonzaga coach Kelly Graves in his first year leading the Ducks. Payne played for Graves at Saint Mary's and coached under him at Gonzaga. "It'll be great to see Kelly, he's like a father to me," Payne said.
Stanford: The Cardinal had an early wakeup call for a 5:45 a.m. bus to the airport Monday to travel to Tennessee. They will play at Chattanooga on Wednesday before visiting the 11th-ranked Lady Vols three days later.