Fullerton Falls in OT at Matadome
NORHTRIDGE, Calif. – Josh Greene's three-pointer with 2.5 seconds left on the clock in regulation sent the game into overtime, and Cal State Northridge pulled away in the extra frame recording a 92-83 victory on Saturday night at the Matadome.
Fullerton (7-15, 2-6 Big West) suffered its third straight loss despite dynamic performances from Alex Harris, Michael Williams and Steve McClellan. Cal State Northridge improved to 12-13 overall and 4-6 in the Big West Conference.
Cal State Fullerton led 62-56 with 1:37 left in regulation after two Harris free throws, but Greene cut that lead in half knocking down his first three-pointer of the game. A Titan turnover on the following play led to two Cal State Northridge free throws from Stephen Maxwell as Fullerton's lead was 62-61 with 52 seconds left on the clock.
On the following Fullerton possession, McClellan knocked down two freebies to give the Titans some breathing room, but once again Fullerton had trouble with Greene as he was fouled and made 2-of-2 at the charity stripe.
The Titans beat the Northridge press on the next play, and Jared Brandon made an uncontested lay-up to give Fullerton a 66-63 lead with 33 seconds left. The Matadors committed a turnover on their next possession and then fouled Michael Williams, but the senior made just 1-of-2 at the line.
Northridge once again cut Fullerton's lead to 67-65 with nine seconds left after two Landon Drew free throws, and CSUN fouled McClellan on the next play as the junior made 1-of-2 at the line with seven seconds left, leaving the opportunity for Green's long distance bucket to send the game in overtime.
In overtime, the Titans were outscored 24-15 led by Maxwell and Stephan Hicks, who combined for 15 points.
Harris led the Titans with career-high 27 points, shooting 7-of-11 from three-point range. McClellan finished the night scoring a career-best 18 points while also grabbing a career-high 15 rebounds.
Williams recorded his 22nd straight game scoring in double figures with a 20-point effort and a team-high four assists.
Hicks led the Matadors with 27 points and 13 rebounds, making 13-of-16 at the free-throw line. Maxwell poured in 22 points, grabbing nine rebounds and shooting 10-of-12 from the free-throw line. Greene finished his night with 19 points.
Cal State Fullerton led 54-43 with 9:25 to play after a Williams' steal led to a Harris three-pointer, but the Matadors were able to cut that lead to 54-49 in less than two minutes.
Fullerton opened the second half on a 10-2 run taking a 42-32 lead with 16:00 left to play.
Cal State Fullerton held a 32-30 lead at the break after knocking down seven three-pointers in the first 20 minutes.
Notes: The Titans played in their first overtime game of the year…for the first time this year, Cal State Fullerton shot a higher percentage (.421-.410) than its opponent and lost…Cal State Fullerton used its eighth starting lineup of the year: Blackwell, Harris, Williams, Brandon, McClellan…Michael Williams, with 20 points, has scored in double figures for 22 straight games, and recorded his seventh 20-point game of the year…Alex Harris scored a career-high 27 points and also knocked down a career-best seven three-pointers. Both marks also set Titan season highs…the Titans knocked down 12 three-pointers in the game, setting a season high…Fullerton knocked down seven three-pointers in the first half, marking the third time this season Fullerton has recorded seven treys in a frame…Fullerton's 23 made free throws and 37 free-throw attempts set season highs…the Titans lost their seventh straight road game and have yet to win a Big West game on the road…Steve McClellan set career highs scoring 18 points and grabbing 15 rebounds. McClellan's 15 rebounds also marked a Titan season high…Williams and Harris each scored 20 points in the same game for the second straight game and for the third time this year.