The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Matadors hoping to win big at Big West Championships in Henderson

Aliyah Hinckley
Guard Dionte Bostick, 0, dribbles to the hoop, takes it up and gets fouled by the Cal Poly SLO defender shooting guard Quentin Jones, 1, on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2024, at the Premier America Credit Union Arena in Northridge, Calif.

In year one of the Andy Newman era of CSUN men’s basketball, Newman successfully navigated the Matadors to the seventh seed in the 2024 Big West Basketball Championships. The Matadors have had their fair share of highs and lows throughout conference play but will continue their season with a chance to move onto the NCAA Tournament.

CSUN will open up tournament play on Wednesday, March 13 with a first round matchup against sixth-seeded UC Santa Barbara at 8:30 p.m.

The teams split the season series with both teams winning on the road. The Gauchos ran through CSUN in their first matchup, beating them by 28 points in a 97-69 drubbing at the Premier America Credit Union on January 18th.

The Matadors evened the series up in Santa Barbara, beating the Gauchos by eight in an 82-74 victory on February 10th.

Newman’s squad will have to rely heavily on what got them to the postseason: physical defense and rebounding. The Matadors ended the regular season as the Big West leaders in rebounding and opponent field goal percentage.

March 13th will be exactly 10 years since the last time CSUN won a conference tournament game. Traveling back to the 2013-14 season, the fifth-seeded Matadors went on a run to the championship game, defeating the four seed Hawaii and three seed Long Beach State before falling short to Cal Poly in the championship game.

Just a few years ago during the COVID-shortened 2019-20 season, the Matadors finished the regular season second in the Big West and looked primed for a run before the pandemic hit and took out postseason play for the NCAA across the board.

For CSUN, it will be a war of attrition as they will have to battle four teams in four days if they want to dance in the NCAA tournament.

The winner of this matchup will advance to the quarterfinals of the Big West Basketball Championships and take on the three seed Hawaii on Thursday, March 14th.

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