SAN MARCOS, Calif. - A strong second-half defense and a game-high 24 points from Christian Bayne helped lead the University of California San Diego men's basketball team to a 78-66 victory against conference foe Cal State San Marcos Saturday night at The Sports Center.
UC San Diego, which has now won its last four games, improved to 5-3 overall and 2-0 in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA). Cal State San Marcos had its five-game win streak halted and dropped to 6-2 on the season and 1-1 in the league.
UCSD held CSUSM to a meager 28.6 percent shooting in the second half as the Cougars hit just eight of their 28 attempts.
Bayne, the reigning CCAA Player of the Week, was a force in the second frame as well, scoring the Tritons' first 11 points and finishing the half with 18. For the game, he was 7-for-12 from the field and 9-for-10 from the free throw line. He also added seven rebounds, two assists, and two steals to his totals.
It was the second-straight game that Bayne netted 20-plus points as he totaled 28 in a win over Cal State San Bernardino Thursday.
Two other Tritons hit double-figures in points Saturday as Christian Oshita finished with 17 and Anthony Ballestero had 16. Oshita grabbed a team-high eight rebounds, while Ballestero made four treys.
More than half of UCSD's shots - 30 of 55 - were three-point attempts. The Tritons made good on 11 of those. They shot 43.6 percent (24-55) overall and scored 22 points off of 11 CSUSM turnovers.
Cal State San Marcos led by as many as nine points and held a 36-35 lead at halftime. However, UC San Diego kicked off the second half with an 11-4 run fueled by Bayne. His jumper tied it at 37-37 and an ensuing layup by the junior guard gave the Tritons the lead for good with 17:47 remaining in the contest.
Scott Everman drained a three-pointer at the 7:41 mark to put UCSD up by 16 (66-50), its largest advantage of the night.
For the Cougars, Joe Boyd recorded a double-double with 15 points and 16 rebounds. Ethan Alvano had 22 points, 10 of those coming at the charity stripe, and Josh Spiers had 19 points. Spiers hit all five of the Cougars' three-pointers.
UC San Diego hosts league opponent Cal State Monterey Bay on Friday, Dec. 8 at 7:30 p.m. UCSD students are admitted free of charge.