CHICO, Calif. - Drew Dyer hit a shot as time expired to lift the UC San Diego men's basketball team to a 66-64 victory over Chico State Friday night at Acker Gymnasium.
With the score knotted at 64-64 and just one second remaining on the clock, the Tritons inbounded the ball from under the net on their offensive end and Dyer drained a 16-foot jumper falling away for the dramatic win. James McCann, UCSD's recently-crowned Division II career assists leader, added another helper to his total on the play. (watch video of the final seconds here)
Chico State had taken a 64-62 lead when Jordan Semple drove for a layup with 10 seconds left. Semple then fouled Hunter Walker, who netted a pair of free throws with 1.6 on the clock to even the score at 64-64. The Wildcats turned the ball over on the ensuing inbounds play with a long pass that overshot everyone, setting up the game-winning situation for the Tritons.
"I thought our guys played with a lot of heart and toughness," said UCSD head coach Eric Olen. "We continued to compete and fight back when we got behind. We really put ourselves in position to have a chance and we were fortunate to make some plays at the end. I'm really proud of our effort."
With the win, UCSD improved to 11-8 overall and 7-8 in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA). CSUC, which had won 19 of its last 20 games at home, fell to 14-5 on the year and 10-5 in league contests.
The Wildcats led the entire first half. A three-pointer by Giordano Estrada at the 13:52 mark put CSUC up by 12, 14-2, its largest advantage of the night. However, UCSD battled and a three by McCann with just over a minute left in the opening half got the Tritons within two, 33-31, before the break.
The second half opened with McCann hitting two free throws to tie the game for the first time. However, a 12-1 run by the Wildcats gave them a 45-34 lead with 14:37 remaining. The Tritons again chipped away and back-to-back-to-back threes, two from Dyer and one by McCann, gave UCSD a 60-54 lead with 6:19 left.
The Tritons held on to an advantage until Amir Carraway drilled a three-pointer to tie it at 62-62 at the 1:11 mark.
McCann finished with a game-high 23 points. He made four three-pointers and also contributed six rebounds and four assists. Dyer had 17 points and nine boards, while Aleks Lipovic totaled 12 points, all on threes.
Chico State got 17 points out of Carraway and 12 each from Estrada and Sean Park. Semple had a game-high 11 rebounds and four blocks.
CSUC out-rebounded UCSD 40-32 and scored 30 points in the paint to the Tritons' 18.
The win was a sort of redemption for last season's game at Chico State, which UCSD lost by a score of 64-61. A McCann three-pointer at the buzzer to tie it was originally ruled good but then waved off by the officials.
UCSD plays at Cal State Stanislaus Saturday at 7:30 p.m. The Warriors (13-6, 9-6) nearly upset No. 12 Cal State San Bernardino Friday, but lost by two points, 77-75.