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 open exhibition play with win

The Cal State Northridge men’s basketball team shot 51 percent from the field, 50 percent from the three point line and had five players score in double figures en route to a 97-82 win over the Cal State Los Angeles Golden Eagles in the first preseason game in front of 1,197 at the Matadome Nov. 2.

“We did some good things,” said head coach Bobby Braswell. “I thought we had some good defensive intensity and when we executed our offense, it was pretty effective.”

Junior Jonathan Heard led CSUN with 16 points, shooting 6-7 from the field in just 15 minutes before fouling out. Junior Jayme Miller was second on the team in scoring with 15 points on 6-9 shooting in 17 minutes and junior Calvin Chitwood put in 12 points and had 13 rebounds for the double-double. Jontae Vinson led the Golden Eagles with 22 points on 7-15 from the field in 29 minutes.

“We use these games kind of like practice,” Chitwood said. “We look at film and figure out where we need to be, but overall I think we did pretty well and hopefully we can do better next game.”

The first half started quickly for the Matadors when Chitwood hit a short jump shot from the left side on CSUN’s first possession, giving the Matadors an early 2-0 lead. It took the Golden Eagles more than two minutes before they got their first score, cutting the Matador lead to 6-2.

With three minutes gone by, Braswell instructed CSUN to switch to a full-court press and his team rewarded him by extending their lead to eight on a jump shot by sophomore Tre Peters.

The Golden Eagles would cut the lead back to four at 12-8 before the first stoppage of play. After the timeout, however, CSUN came out and again extended its lead to eight off a three-pointer by junior Rai Colston.

The Matadors extended their lead to 22-12 with 12 minutes left in the first half on a deep three by junior Jordan Noblitt. CSUN extended its lead to 12 on a Noblitt lay-up a minute later.

Cal State L.A., however, would cut the lead to four on a Marques Hamilton three with seven minutes remaining out of a timeout. But CSUN would keep its composure and extend to the biggest Matador lead of the first half on another Noblitt three to make it 39-26 with a little under four minutes left in the first half. The Golden Eagles, however, cut the lead to nine going into the half at 43-34.

The Matadors shot 42 percent from the field in the first half while holding Cal State L.A. to a mere 31 percent from the field. The Matadors also shot 50 percent from beyond the arc and got to the line 15 times, making 10.

CSUN came out strong in the second half, going on a 5-0 run, capped by a Chitwood three before Vinson hit a three for the Golden Eagles’ first points of the second half.

The Matadors extended their lead to 20 three minutes later on a Heard three, and then extended the lead to 21 on another three, this time by Colston with 10 minutes left in the game.

The closest the Golden Eagles got was 13 on a Vincent Camper lay-up with a little over two minutes remaining.

However, Miller made sure the Matadors did not let the Golden Eagles back into the game by scoring twice on two lay-ups and grabbing two rebounds and one steal. This was Miller’s first action since he fractured his thumb seven games into last season.

“It feels great to be around all my guys,” Miller said. “(We are) going back to work and got to take care of business.”

CSUN also out-rebounded Cal State L.A. 50-32, including 21 offensive rebounds. The Matadors had 20 assists on 30 shots made, as well as eight blocks and seven steals. The only negatives for CSUN were 22 turnovers and committing 28 fouls, which led to 25 points at the free-throw line for the Golden Eagles.

“Our biggest hick-up on defense is fouling too much,” Braswell said. “They scored 14 points from the free-throw line in the first half and that is way too many points to give up like that.”

The Matadors will next be on the court against Cal Baptist for their final preseason game at 7:05 p.m. on Nov. 7 at the Matadome.

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