Tritons Suffer First Conference Loss, 61-55 at Cal State LA
LOS ANGELES - An uncharacteristically low shooting percentage led to the first conference loss of the season for the 14th-ranked University of California San Diego men's basketball team Thursday night, a 61-55 setback against Cal State LA at University Gym in Los Angeles.
UC San Diego shot 38.9 percent (21-54) overall and 24.1 percent (7-29) from beyond the three-point arc. Both of those percentages were the second-lowest of the season for the Tritons, who fell to 12-3 on the year and 7-1 in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA).
UC San Diego came in leading the nation in three-pointers made (174) and ranked third in threes per game (12.4). The Tritons' seven treys were a season low.
Christian Bayne put together a strong all-around performance, finishing with a game-high 22 points to go with nine rebounds, three steals, two blocks, and an assist. The senior guard made nine of his 17 shots and netted four three-pointers. Center Chris Hansen, the CCAA's leading scorer and rebounder, was held to just two points but did grab a game-high 11 rebounds. Guard Jeremy Johnson had eight points and four assists for UC San Diego.
The Golden Eagles scored the first three points of the game and led for the entire opening half. They were ahead by as many as 11 points, their largest advantage of the game, in the first stanza.
With the Tritons down by four at the half, guard Mikey Howell (San Marcos/San Marcos HS) hit a three-pointer to open the second frame and get his team back within a single point at 30-29. Cal State LA surged and was up by 10 points, 51-41, with just under six minutes remaining. UC San Diego then went on an 11-4 run to cut its deficit to three, 55-52, with 59 ticks left on the clock. The final minute saw the Golden Eagles out-score the Tritons 6-3 at the free throw line to seal the victory.
Cal State LA was led offensively by Devin Means and Jihad Woods, who scored 15 and 11 points, respectively. The Eagles, who shot lower than the Tritons at 37 percent, totaled 17 points off of 16 UC San Diego turnovers.
UC San Diego remains in Los Angeles County to take on Cal State Dominguez Hills (7-4, 5-1) Saturday at 3 p.m. The Toros have won five straight games.
About UC San Diego Athletics
With 30 national team championships, nearly 150 individual titles, and the top student-athlete graduation rate among Division II institutions in the United States, the UC San Diego intercollegiate athletics program annually ranks as one of the most successful in the country. The Tritons sponsor 23 intercollegiate sport programs that compete on the NCAA Division I and II levels and, in the summer of 2020, will transition into full Division I status as a member of the Big West Conference. UC San Diego student-athletes exemplify the academic ideals of one of the world's pre-eminent institutions, graduating at an average rate of 91 percent. A total of 80 Tritons have earned Academic All-America honors, while 36 have earned prestigious NCAA Post-Graduate Scholarships. In competition, more than 1,300 UC San Diego student-athletes have earned All-America honors.
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For complete coverage and information regarding UC San Diego Athletics, follow the Tritons online at UCSDTritons.com and through social media on Twitter (@UCSDTritons), Instagram (@UCSDTritons) and Facebook (UCSDTritons). To stay tuned in to UC San Diego Men's Basketball, follow the team's Instagram (@UCSDmbb) and Twitter (@UCSDmbb), as well as Head Coach Eric Olen's Twitter (@CoachEricOlen) and Associate Head Coach Clint Allard's Twitter (@CoachAllard).