TURLOCK, Calif. - The University of California San Diego men's basketball team closed out 2017 on a high note Sunday, collecting a convincing 70-58 victory on the road against league opponent Stanislaus State at Fitzpatrick Arena.
UC San Diego elevated its overall record to 8-5 and is now 5-2 in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA). The 12-point win was tied for the Tritons' largest margin of victory in a conference match-up this season.
It was the third-straight loss for Stan State, which fell to 9-5 and 5-4.
UCSD's offense was potent. The Tritons shot 49.1 percent (26-53) for the game, which included a 55.2 percent (16-29) clip in the first half. Of their 26 made baskets, 19 came with an assist. They hit 12 three-pointers, with forward Scott Everman (5) and guard Christian Oshita (4) combining for nine. On the defensive side of the ball, UC San Diego finished with 10 steals, matching a season-high. Five steals were credited to Everman.
"It was great to get a conference win on the road," said UCSD head coach Eric Olen. "Our guys did a nice job staying sharp during the break and that was evident this weekend. It was a solid end to 2017 and we are excited about getting back to work in 2018."
UCSD led by as many as 15 points in the opening half when a Christian Bayne jumper made it 40-25 at the 1:41 mark. The bucket capped an 8-0 run by the Tritons. Everman had 16 of his 19 total points in the frame, 12 of those coming off three-pointers. Bayne scored 11 points in the half and finished the game with 13. It marked the first time this season that the guard collected more than half of his total points in the first stanza.
At the break, Stanislaus State owned advantages in field goal percentage (58.3-55.2) and rebounds (16-6), but the Warriors turned the ball over 12 times, which led to 12 points for UCSD.
The second half saw 10 more turnovers added to Stan State's half of the box score. The Warriors' field goal percentage dropped almost 13 percentage points and they continued to struggle from long range, finishing the game with just one three-pointer in 11 attempts.
With 15:27 left in the game, forward Michael Shoemaker drilled a three that put UC San Diego up by 20 points (57-37), its biggest lead of the game. The Warriors responded by mounting a 16-4 run to get themselves back within eight points (61-53) with just under five minutes left on the clock. However, the Tritons scored the next four points to go back up by 12 and a trey by Oshita with 1:21 left essentially sealed the victory.
The Warriors were held to zero field goals in the final three minutes of play.
Oshita finished with a game-high 20 points and a team-best seven rebounds. He was 7-for-12 shooting and 4-for-7 from behind the arc. Bayne and fellow guard Mikey Howell each dished out five assists. Bayne transferred to UC San Diego from Stan State and Sunday's game was his first against his former team.
Stanislaus State, which scored 42 of its points in the paint, got 19 points from Andy Cleaves and 12 from Ty Davis. Xavier Francois came down with a game-high 10 rebounds.
With its victories over San Francisco State and Stanislaus State this week, UCSD moved into fourth place in the CCAA standings.
For the first time this season, UC San Diego will play back-to-back CCAA games at home, hosting Humboldt State on Friday, Jan. 5 and Chico State on Saturday, Jan. 6. Both contests tip at 7:30 p.m. at RIMAC Arena. UCSD students are admitted free.