CSUN men’s basketball takes the win over UCR

    CSUN basketball players jump up to block opposing team's shot
    CSUN'S Junior forward, Tavrion Dawson(left) and CSUN'S Junior center, Dylan Johns(right), working together to defend a UC Irvine player at the game on Saturday, January 21. (Breaunne Pinckney/The Sundial)

    Junior forward Tavrion Dawson stole the show Saturday night as CSUN defeated the UC Riverside Highlanders to take third place in the Big West Conference.

    Dawson had a total of 22 points and 12 rebounds for his second straight double-double helping CSUN win on the road 63-59.

    It was a contested game as Riverside was able to erase a six point CSUN halftime lead.

    There were a total of 10 lead changes with eight coming in the second half.

    It was a defensive battle as neither team shot over 35 percent from the field with the Highlanders shooting a higher percentage from the field.

    The Matadors were able to win the game at the free throw line making 22 of 30 attempts shooting 73.3 percent from the line, keeping their team total above 70 percent on the year.

    Riverside attempted 22 making 15 and shooting 68.2 percent from the line.

    The Highlanders also shot an abysmal two for 13 from the three point line, shooting 15.4 percent on the game.

    A couple of key plays near the end were able to seal the victory for the Matadors.

    With 1:25 left, the Matadors were able to find junior guard Michael Warren for the corner three to give them a 60-58 lead.

    After exchanging free throws, CSUN was up 61-59 with 10 seconds left when junior guard Kendall Smith forced a crucial turnover.

    Dawson was sent to the line and nailed the free throws to give CSUN the 63-59 victory.

    Dawson will look to make it three straight games with a double-double as CSUN returns home on Wednesday to face Long Beach State at 7 p.m.