Pair of Late Free Throws Clinches Road Victory

MEN’S BASKETBALL — UCSD turned in a solid performance last Feb. 16, beating Cal State East Bay 67-48. They then saw a split road trip over the weekend, losing 61-50 to San Francisco State and beating Cal State Monterey Bay 78-74.

The Tritons, led by senior guard Tyler Acevedo and his season-high 19 points, comfortably defeated the Cal State East Bay by 19 points in RIMAC Arena. Sophomore center Christian Hatch contributed a double-double of his own — 12 points and 10 rebounds — to help lead the Tritons to their sixth conference win of the season. Hatch nailed big free throws throughout the game, hitting eight of 10 from the line.

Defense was once again key, as the Tritons held Cal State East Bay to 28 percent shooting and matched a season-best defensive effort set last week by holding the Pioneers to only 48 points.

After a confident win at home, the UCSD men traveled to San Francisco, hoping for a successful road trip the second week in a row. However, the Tritons couldn’t close in on the Gators after a tight score of 27-28 at halftime. San Francisco went on an 8-2 run with 12 minutes to go in the game, leaving the Tritons behind.

After suffering the loss to San Francisco on Friday, UCSD revved up play Cal State Monterey Bay on Saturday night. Though tired, the men were able to edge out the Otters for a four-point victory.

Recently, the Tritons have struggled with back-to-back road games. However, leading scorer and guard Jordan Lawley took it upon himself Saturday to heave the team to victory with 28 points. Hatch also had a great game, scoring 17 points and shooting a perfect five-of-five from the free-throw line. Off the bench, freshman forward Justin Brue was a huge help, contributing six points in only 17 minutes of play.

“It was their senior night,” Lawley said. “They had the competitive edge and we wanted to take it from them.”

Head coach Chris Carlson said he was pleased with the performance by Lawley, as well as the rest of the team. As a group that often struggles in the second half, he said it was important for the players to hold strong toward the end.

“Execution was good,” he said. “The boys showed a lot of perseverance and mental toughness in the second half.”

In order to make it to the playoffs, the Tritons must win their final two games of the regular season this weekend. As a senior and the team’s leading scorer, Lawley has assumed a leadership role. He said the team will need to maintain defensive ferocity to finish the season strong.

“We have to come out with intensity these last two games,” Lawley said. “We tend to drop off, and we need to step up on the defensive end.”

The Tritons have two games left in the regular season. They play against Sonoma State University on Feb. 24 and against Humboldt State University on Feb. 26. Both games will be held at 7:30 p.m. at RIMAC arena. UCSD lost at Humboldt State 74-60 and at Sonoma State 78-66 in its meetings with both teams earlier this season.

The Tritons have made the playoffs each of the last two seasons.

Readers can contact Wesley Cox at [email protected].

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