Nov. 23, 2013
Click here for postgame player interview
San Jose, Calif.-----Four Spartan players scored in double figures for the fourth time in six games as San Jose State University made it two in a row in an 81-59 victory over Cal State Fullerton in a non-conference men's basketball game at The Event Center Saturday.
Playing in their home opener, Spartan guards D.J. Brown and Rashad Muhammad came off the bench to each score 17 points. Muhammad scored all of his points in the first half. Starting guard Devante Wilson scored a season-high 16, and center Chris Cunnigham scored 13 and led all players with 10 rebounds, his first double-double of the season.
San Jose State (2-4) established its dominance from the start scoring the game's first eight points. After Cal State Fullerton's first basket by Sheldon Blackwell at the 16:20 mark, Muhammad went on a 14-point scoring spree over a 4:46 span. The 6-foot-5 freshman found three different ways to score three points at a time with a pair of 3-point field goals, a conventional three-point play and converting all three free throws on a Titan foul beyond the three-point arc during his run.
The Spartans had their first 20-point lead of the game, 28-6, after Wilson nailed back-to-back three-pointers, including one from 26 feet on top. Converting nine three-point baskets in the first 20 minutes, San Jose State went into halftime with a 49-19 advantage and were never threatened in the second half.
"It's nice to be on the other end of that. It felt good to have a team at our mercy," said Cunningham of the team's first Division I win of 20 or more points since a December 2011 victory over UC Davis, 79-59.
"Our guys understood their personnel. They locked in on whom they were guarding and limited them to one shot. Cal State Fullerton is a very good transition team," said San Jose State head coach Dave Wojcik.
"We pushed the ball and limited them to one shot. We want to play fast and we got open looks," added the Spartans' coach about San Jose State being able to impose its transition game on the Titans.
Coming into the game, Cal State Fullerton (2-3) had its most recent win over Santa Clara, 86-73, in the Titans' only home game. In the Spartans' season-opener, San Jose State lost at Santa Clara, 89-77. That didn't phase a focused group of Spartans coming off of an 83-77 win at Pepperdine on November 20.
Cal State Fullerton shot a season-low 37.0 percent. San Jose State finished with a similar 37.3 percent, but was 9-of-19 from three-point range for the first 20 minutes building its lead.
"We didn't have any energy or effort," Titans' head coach Dedrique Taylor said about the start of the game. Cal State Fullerton also did not have the services of leading scorer Alex Harris, who averaged 17.7 points a game for the first three games. Harris missed his second game in a row due to an ankle injury.
"We didn't guard or play with discipline. For us, it's hard to win if you don't have that."
San Jose State will look to make it three in a row when the Spartans take on the University of Portland, Wednesday, November 27 at the Chiles Center.
Cal State Fullerton vs San Jose State
11/23/13 12:30 p.m. at San Jose, Calif. (The Event Center)
SAN JOSE STATE 81, CAL STATE FULLERTON 59
CAL STATE FULLERTON (2-3)
Williams, Michael 5-11 1-2 12; Gentry, Josh 3-5 1-2 10; Blackwell, Sheldon 3-9 2-5 9; Boyd, Joe 3-4 3-4 9; McClellan, Steve 2-6 2-2 6; Collins, Chris 2-6 2-3 6; Horne, Marquis 1-4 1-2 3; Brandon, Jared 1-8 0-0 2; Versteeg, Floris 0-0 2-2 2; Johnson, James 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 20-54 14-22 59.
SAN JOSE STATE (2-4)
Muhammad, Rashad 4-8 6-6 17; Brown, D.J. 3-5 9-11 17; Wilson, Devante 5-14 2-3 16; Cunningham, Chris 5-12 3-5 13; Williams, Jaleel 2-8 1-2 6; Mitchell, Brandon 1-2 3-4 5; James, Jalen 1-6 2-2 5; Pollard, Matt 1-1 0-1 2; Thornton, Isaac 0-0 0-0 0; Alexander, Dylan 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 22-59 26-34 81.
Cal State Fullerton........... 19 40 - 59
San Jose State................ 49 32 - 81
3-point goals--Cal State Fullerton 5-12 (Gentry, Josh 3-4; Blackwell, Sheldon 1-4; Williams, Michael 1-3; Brandon, Jared 0-1), San Jose State 11-28 (Wilson, Devante 4-10; Muhammad, Rashad 3-4; Brown, D.J. 2-4; Williams, Jaleel 1-4; James, Jalen 1-3; Alexander, Dylan 0-2; Mitchell, Brandon 0-1). Fouled out--Cal State Fullerton-None, San Jose State-None. Rebounds--Cal State Fullerton 37 (Williams, Michael 6), San Jose State 40 (Cunningham, Chris 10). Assists--Cal State Fullerton 13 (Collins, Chris 3; Williams, Michael 3), San Jose State 13 (Brown, D.J. 4; James, Jalen 4). Total fouls--Cal State Fullerton 23, San Jose State 21. Technical fouls--Cal State Fullerton-None, San Jose State-None. A-1284.
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