San Jose, Calif.-----James Kinney and Louis Garrett combined for 47 points as San Jose State defeated Seattle University, 76-71, in a Western Athletic Conference men's basketball game.
Kinney led all scorers with 26 points and Garrett scored a season-high 21 points for the Spartans (8-6, 3-1 WAC). It was the first time this season two San Jose State players scored 20 or more points in the same game. Both players were 3-of-6 from 3-point range.
The win was the Spartans' third in the last four games and gives San Jose State its best four-game conference record since 1988 when the Spartans were in the Big West Conference.
THE TALK ABOUT MAKING SHOTS
"We had better rhythm (on offense). We moved the ball and made them defend for longer stretches. Our guys think they can 'quick-shoot' it, but it is not a good strategy for us. Tonight, we were more patient, had some good in-out stuff, some good balance and that's what we want our offense to be," said San Jose State coach George Nessman whose team rebounded from a 28.2 shooting percentage two nights earlier in a 64-55 loss to Idaho with a 43.4 percent figure.
"I've been trying to put up some extra shots (in practice). My teammates believe in me and we have some good energy going around the team right now that is benefitting us," said the 6-foot-6 Garrett.
Chris Cunningham was a third double-figure scorer for the Spartans with 15 points before fouling out with 3:00 remaining in the game. Starting guard D.J. Brown handed out a career-high 11 assists in the win.
"Chris is one of our X-factor players without a doubt. His presence makes a difference for us and his rebounding ability in most games makes a difference for us. It's one of the rare wins we've had when he doesn't have a lot of rebounds," Nessman said about his 6-foot-9 starting forward who played 33 minutes and was not in any foul difficulties like he was in the January 3 loss to Idaho.
SEATTLE U. SHOOTS 34.3 PERCENT
After leading 29-28 at halftime, San Jose State used an 11-0 run at the start of the second half to take a 44-35 lead with 14:15 to go, but Seattle University (5-8, 0-3 WAC) battled to take its last lead of the game, 55-54 with 5:52 to go on a Luiz Bidart free throw. Cunningham then made a pair of baskets and the Spartans stayed in front the remainder of the game.
Forward Chad Rasmussen led the Redhawks with 15 points. Rasmussen was a bother to the Spartans early, but was just 2-of-8 from the field in the second half. Forward Luis Green and Bidart each had career highs with 14 and 12 points, respectively, but Seattle University had its second lowest field shooting percentage of the season at 34.3 percent.
"Coach is always stressing high energy and ball pressure. We knew they liked to go high-low. We were prepared for it and ready to defend," said Garrett.
The Spartans also helped themselves making 22-of-29 free throws including 13-of-16 in the final three minutes.
Newspaper Box Score
Seattle U vs San Jose State
01/05/13 7:00 p.m. at San Jose, Calif. (The Event Center)
At San Jose, Calif. (The Event Center)
SAN JOSE STATE 76, SEATTLE U 71
SEATTLE U (5-8, 0-3 WAC)
Rasmussen, Chad 5-15 2-4 15; Green, Louis 6-7 2-4 14; Bidart, Luiz 1-3 9-10
12; Crook, Jack 2-3 3-4 8; Trent, Clarence 3-10 0-0 7; Sunderhaus, Deshaun
3-12 1-1 7; Pickett, D'Vonne Jr. 2-4 0-1 5; Flora, Jarell 1-6 0-0 3; Obasi,
Prince 0-7 0-0 0. Totals 23-67 17-24 71.
SAN JOSE STATE (8-6, 3-1 WAC)
Kinney, James 7-15 9-12 26; Garrett, Louis 7-11 4-4 21; Cunningham, Chris
6-9 3-5 15; Brown, D.J. 1-8 3-4 6; Pennington, LaVanne 2-7 0-0 5; Jones,
Chris 0-0 2-2 2; Jones, Xavier 0-0 1-2 1; VanKirk, Mike 0-0 0-0 0; Smith,
Stephon 0-1 0-0 0; Brown, Alex 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 23-53 22-29 76.
Seattle U..................... 28 43 - 71
San Jose State................ 29 47 - 76
3-point goals--Seattle U 8-28 (Rasmussen, Chad 3-10; Bidart, Luiz 1-2;
Trent, Clarence 1-4; Crook, Jack 1-1; Flora, Jarell 1-5; Pickett, D'Vonne
Jr. 1-2; Obasi, Prince 0-2; Sunderhaus, Deshaun 0-2), San Jose State 8-21
(Garrett, Louis 3-6; Kinney, James 3-6; Brown, D.J. 1-5; Pennington, LaVanne
1-4). Fouled out--Seattle U-Crook, Jack, San Jose State-Cunningham, Chris;
Brown, Alex. Rebounds--Seattle U 39 (Green, Louis 9), San Jose State 35
(Kinney, James 7). Assists--Seattle U 15 (Obasi, Prince 6), San Jose State
18 (Brown, D.J. 11). Total fouls--Seattle U 23, San Jose State 19. Technical
fouls--Seattle U-None, San Jose State-None. A-1081