San Jose, Calif.----- Forward Frank Rogers scored 15 of his game-high 17 points in the second half leading San José State to a 65-53 win over Fresno State in a Mountain West men's basketball game.
The win by the Spartans (8-15, 3-8 Mountain West) gave San José State its first two-game winning streak in conference play since the 2011 season when the team posted five straight Western Athletic Conference victories en route to a 17-16 overall record.
Freshman forward Brandon Clarke posted his third double-double of the season with 14 points and a season-high 15 rebounds. Isaac Thornton and Cody Schwartz, each with 12 points, gave the Spartans four double-figure scorers.
Thornton was everywhere, and his bucket plus the foul, which gave SJSU the 54-48 lead with 2:27 left, was the turning point in the contest. From there the Spartans put the game on ice with free throws, which have been the team's Achilles' heel. However, tonight was one of their best free throw shooting games of the season, converting 23-of-27 tries (85.2 percent).
San José State went 14-of-15 in the final 7:43 once the Spartans began shooting bonus free throws.
On a night where the team shot just 36.7 percent, it seemed like all of the big shots were falling for the Spartans. Rogers canned a three at the 10:57 mark to give SJSU the 39-35 lead. Schwartz extended that lead to 47-41 with a three of his own a few minutes later. Then Clarke grabbed an offensive rebound and hit a reverse lay-in to give San José State a 51-43 advantage with 4:52 left.
Guard Cezar Guerrero kept the Bulldogs afloat throughout the second half with buckets from all over the floor. He knocked down a three which put Fresno State up 35-32 at the 14:16 mark, and then went on a six-point burst later that included a layup and two pretty jumpers.
Fresno State (14-8, 5-4 Mountain West) shot a season-low 34.4 percent from the field, the second San José State opponent in a row that failed to make at least 40 percent of its field goal attempts. Marvelle Harris, the Mountain West's third leading scorer at 19.2 per game, scored a season-low seven points. Harris was 2-of-16 from the field.
Guerrero led Fresno State with 12 points. Karachi Edo was the only other Bulldog in double-figure scoring with 11. While Guerrero and Edo combined to go 10-of-17 from the field, the rest of the Bulldogs were 11-for-46. Fresno State made just two field goals the final 4:30 of the game.
San José State led by as many as 13 points on two occasions in the final minute.
San José State will have a week off before taking on UNLV next Wednesday, February 10 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.
Fresno State vs San José State
SAN JOSé STATE 65, FRESNO STATE 53
FRESNO STATE (14-8, 5-4 MW)
SAN JOSé STATE (8-15, 3-8 MW)
Fresno State.................. 23 30 - 53
3-point goals--Fresno State 3-15 (GUERRERO, Cezar 2-4; WATSON, Paul 1-3;