CSUN wins second straight, routs Bethesda, 79-49

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CSUN wins second straight, routs Bethesda, 79-49

The Matadors won has their first winning streak of the season after defeating Bethesda on Dec. 20.

The Matadors won has their first winning streak of the season after defeating Bethesda on Dec. 20.

The Matadors won has their first winning streak of the season after defeating Bethesda on Dec. 20.

The Matadors won has their first winning streak of the season after defeating Bethesda on Dec. 20.

Daniel Robles

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CSUN junior guard Kendall Smith led the way with 22 points, the CSUN men’s basketball defeated Bethesda University Flames with ease by a score of 79-49.

After two turnovers on their first two possessions and a 5-1 deficit, the Matadors went on a roll where they would never trail again.

As the half progressed the Matadors jumped out to a double-digit lead by the 11:39 mark in the first half, where senior forward Tre Hale-Edmerson nailed two free throws following a hard drive to the basket.

At the half the Matadors led the Flames by a score of 40-22 on the heels of Kendall Smith’s 13-point effort in the half to lead scorers. This was Kendall Smith’s second game as a Matador and his first game at the Matadome.

“I’m just blessed to be back on the court again, it’s been a long 13 months that I had to sit out” said Smith. “It feels good to be back with a great group of guys and a great coach”.

In a game where they were expected to win the Matadors flexed their strength and proved to be the stronger team by shooting 46.2 percent from the field and 70.5 percent from the free-throw line.

Sophomore forward Tavrion Dawson was a standout coming off of the bench, making 13 out of his 14 free throws.

“I feel like I create a lot of mismatches on the court because I’m so versatile, so I just try to attack sweet spots and go to the rack and get fouled” said Dawson.

Dawson’s strong play off the bench helped the Matadors roll early by frequently attacking the paint and consistently making his free throws.

“I just come in and bring energy play hard on defense, whatever coach asks me to do I’ll do it,” said Dawson. “I saw the team needed a little bit of energy I just came in and started playing hard.”

The inside-outside game proved to be lethal with Kendall Smith shooting the three at a 40 percent clip for the game.

“He [Smith] has experience, the quickness, an understanding of how to play, what needs to happen he’s seen it from a high-level AAU team to a high-level college team” said CSUN head coach Reggie Theus. “He has the ability to play more than one position, shoots the ball from the perimeter, takes it to the basketball. I think just the explosiveness really helps stretch the floor”.

The Matadors also dominated the paint by scoring 36 points versus the away team’s 18 points in the paint.

Despite a comfortable win, Theus continued to utilize a short rotation of players by having six players play at least 24 minutes and four of those players playing over 30 minutes.

CSUN will try to extend their win streak to three when they face the University of San Diego on the road on Wednesday, Dec. 23 at 7 p.m.