Spartans Go For Two In A Row When Bulldogs Come To Town
Feb. 1, 2016
SPARTANS GO FOR TWO IN A ROW WHEN BULLDOGS COME TO TOWN
San José State nearly let Fresno State run away with a blowout win in the last meeting a couple weeks ago, but Ryan Welage wouldn't have it. He hit five threes and sparked a comeback which made for an interesting finish inside the Save Mart Center. Wednesday, the two teams battle it out in San Jose, where the Spartans haven't beaten Fresno State since a 79-71 double overtime win on February 9, 2012. Watch San José State versus Fresno State on Wednesday, February 3, with a 7:00 p.m. tip on the MW Network.
San José State (7-15, 2-8 MW) vs. Fresno State (14-7, 5-3 MW)
Wednesday, February 3, 2016, 7:00 p.m. PST
The Event Center (5,000)
San Jose, Calif.
WATCH: Mountain West Network
LISTEN: Stretch Internet Radio
Purchase your tickets from the Spartan Ticket Office for Wednesday's game and all home Spartan men's basketball games. The office can be reached by telephone at 408-924-7589. The Spartan Ticket Office is your one stop shop for tickets to all SJSU Athletics events.
MEN'S HOOPS RACES TO 75-54 WIN OVER AIR FORCE
The Spartans used four consecutive three-point baskets to open up a 12-0 lead and never looked back in the 75-54 win against Air Force. Jaycee Hillsman led the way with 13 points for SJSU which had three more players finish in double-figures scoring. The Spartans' defense held Air Force to 28.6 percent shooting for the game. Isaac Thornton contributed a season-high nine rebounds, five assists and two steals. Brandon Clarke finished with 12 points, eight rebounds and a season-high five blocks.
CLARKE'S GAME IS COMING FULL CIRCLE
As the season wears on, freshman forward Brandon Clarke is beginning to fine-tune other areas of his game besides the efficient inside shooting. Clarke scored 12 points, grabbed eight rebounds and had a season-high five blocks in the win over Air Force, and those kinds of number are becoming more and more routine. Last time against Fresno State, he finished with 12 points and 14 rebounds, seven of which were offensive boards. Clarke has grabbed multiple offensive rebounds in seven of the last eight games.
JALEN FIGHTS THROUGH PAIN FOR SPARTANS' GAIN
Anyone who watched the game at Colorado State last Wednesday knows how much pain Jalen James was feeling after tweaking his ankle. But if you didn't watch that game, you would have never known that it happened based on his performance in the win over Air Force on Saturday. James scored a season-high 11 points and hit three shots from downtown to tie a career best. James was an efficient 4 of 7 from the field and managed one block, steal and assist to go along with his scoring in 11 minutes of action.
Jalen James called his teammate Isaac Thornton "the glue guy" during postgame interviews following the win over Air Force. Thornton has earned that reputation for his production in all facets of the game this season. He grabbed a season-high nine rebounds in the Air Force win. He also had five assists for the second time this season. Thornton is SJSU's leader in steals with 29 this year. He has become the most trustworthy point guard option for head coach Dave Wojcik this season as far as facilitating the San José State offense.
LAST MEETING WITH FRESNO STATE
Ryan Welage's hot shooting in the second half helped SJSU cut Fresno State's 19-point lead down to just three, but the Bulldogs pulled out an 81-74 victory inside the Save Mart Center on January 16. The glaring difference in that game were Fresno State's 46 free throw attempts, of which 35 were made. Marvelle Harris made 12 of his 15 attempts from the stripe, helping him to 32 points. Welage finished with a season-high 28 points and Brandon Clarke notched a double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds.
JUST A FEW PLAYS AWAY FROM BEATING CSU
San José State went into the final three minutes at Colorado State tied up 63-63, but just a few plays kept San José State from picking up their second win during MW play. Two consecutive turnovers which led to five points for the Rams was the turning point of the game. Colorado State's offensive rebounding also hurt SJSU which allowed 20 second-chance points throughout the game.
SCHWARTZ SHOOTS WITH CONFIDNCE AT CSU
Freshman Cody Schwartz hadn't made more than three shots in any Mountain West game this season until he buried 6 out of 11 shots from downtown for 18 points at Colorado State on Wednesday night. It could have easily been more as a few went halfway down before rimming out. Although Schwartz may not be making as many shots during conference play as we know he can, his performance at Colorado State showed that the 6-foot-8 forward still has the confidence to lead the Spartans.