Fresh off a 90-75 victory over the CSULA Golden Eagles, the Matador men’s basketball team will play the CSU Dominguez Hills Toros in their final preseason game Nov. 11 at 7:05 p.m. at the Matadome.
The Matadors first game, a 15-point preaseason victory, was led by junior Mike Efevberha’s 28 points, junior Austin Waggener’s double-double and team shooting over 53 percent, CSULA was ultimately no match for CSUN.
CSUDH opened up its preseason with a 97-84 loss at the hands of the USC Trojans at the Lyon Center in Downtown Los Angeles Nov. 4.
USC started the game with a 33-6 lead and led 49-27 at halftime. The Trojans shot almost 60 percent from the field for the game, including 13-21 from the three-point line.
The second half was much closer as the Toros shot 58 percent after only shooting 31 percent in the first half. However, the lead was too large for the Toros to overcome, as they lost by 13.
Dominguez Hills forward Mario Malave led all scorers with 26 points on 10 of 19 shooting, while also pulling down eight rebounds. Sophomore Nonso Nibo scored 14 points, 6-10 from the field, while junior point guard Carlos Rivers scored 14 points on 5-12 from the floor.
Freshman Jonathan Toliver and sophomore Mike Steed rounded out the double-digit scoring with 10 points each.
The Toros welcomed 11 new players to a team that went 7-20 last season, led by Damaine Powell, who was in his inaugural season as the CSUDH head coach.
The Toros returned two of last season’s five starters, including senior Quishawn Harrell. Harrell averaged almost six points and 3.5 rebounds per game last season.
CSUN’s first game was a surprise to some because typically teams do not play offense as well as the Matadors did, but head coach Bobby Braswell preaches defense.
The Matadors did hold the Golden Eagles to 37 percent shooting from the field, forcing 23 turnovers and 13 steals. However, CSUN committed 21 turnovers and were out rebounded 37-36.
“One of our goals is to get 35 deflections a game and (we) only had 25 against CSULA, which means we were not as active as we needed to be,” Braswell said after the CSULA game. “We have got to be a little more active with our hands and do a better job boxing out.”
This will be the final preseason game of the year for the Matadors. After the Toros, CSUN will take on the Trojans Nov. 20 at USC.
“We have work to do in all of it,” Braswell said. “We have a lot of things that we need to get better at and that is what this process is all about.”
Justin Satzman can be reached at email@example.com