Basketball falls to San Diego State

    The UCSD men’s basketball team went into its game Tuesday night trying to repeat what the women did less than a week before: upset Division I San Diego State University at Cox Arena.

    Dave Ries
    Guardian

    The Aztecs pounded the Tritons 98-53.

    The Division II Tritons jumped out to a 13-10 lead four minutes into the first half and gave their fans hope. Tony Bland, a transfer from Syracuse University who led the Orangemen to the National Collegiate Athletic Association tournament during the 1998-1999 and 1999-2000 seasons, then made two consecutive field goals to give SDSU a 14-13 lead.

    After gaining the lead, the Aztecs went on a 16-4 run over the next 10 minutes and put UCSD out of striking distance. SDSU’s defense forced nine turnovers and the team made nine of 12 shots during the run.

    Dave Ries
    Guardian

    The Aztecs managed to gain nine more points during the rest of the half to go into the locker room with a 57-39 advantage. At the midpoint of the game, the Aztecs were 24-for-32 from the field and had a 15-8 rebound advantage.

    “”We went into the locker room [at halftime] feeling good about our play,”” said SDSU head coach Steve Fisher. “”We knew we had to keep up the pressure.””

    They kept up the pressure. It was more of the same coming out of the half as the Aztecs headed toward the victory, falling just two points short of triple digits.

    Though the score indicates otherwise, the Tritons played much better than they did last week against the University of San Diego — a game UCSD lost 89-62.

    “”I thought we handled the press,”” said Triton head coach Greg Lanthier of the Aztecs’ suffocating defense.

    The Tritons had 26 turnovers, six more than they had against USD, but most of those did not come as a direct result of the press.

    The Tritons remained on the perimeter most of the night against the bigger Aztecs. Of their final 53 field goal attempts, 33 were from beyond the three-point arc. SDSU stifled UCSD’s slashing offense by clogging passing lanes and forcing outside shots.

    “”Their pressure defense forced us to play much quicker than we wanted,”” Lanthier said. “”We weren’t really able to set up our half-court offense.””

    Jody Woods led the Tritons with 13 points and four rebounds while adding a physical presence against the taller and stronger SDSU front line.

    Bland ended the night with 20 points — his fifth consecutive game scoring 20 or more — and eight assists in only 22 minutes of action. The Aztecs went 40-for-59 from the field while making 78 percent of their free throws.

    Point guard Cameron Jackson was out of the Triton lineup for the second straight game. He broke his finger at practice last week.

    “”He has a week or two before he can play again,”” Lanthier said. “”We’re hoping to have him back before we start playing conference games.””

    UCSD opens California Collegiate Athletic Association action Dec. 8 against Sonoma State at RIMAC Arena.

    Despite losing to SDSU by such a margin, Lanthier remained upbeat.

    “”When you schedule a game like this, you know there is a possibility you could get your ass kicked,”” Lanthier said. “”We’re going to keep getting better and we’ll bridge the gap to make these kinds of games a little more entertaining.””

    The Tritons head to Santa Cruz, Calif. this weekend to take on Holy Names College and UC Santa Cruz at the UCSC Invitational.

    UCSD’s next home match will be Dec. 8 against Sonoma State University.

    More to Discover
    Donate to The UCSD Guardian
    $200
    $500
    Contributed
    Our Goal

    Your donation will support the student journalists at University of California, San Diego. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment, keep printing our papers, and cover our annual website hosting costs.

    Donate to The UCSD Guardian
    $200
    $500
    Contributed
    Our Goal