FULLERTON, Calif. – Khalil Ahmad registered a double-double and Rashard Todd came off the bench to score 19 points as Cal State Fullerton earned its largest margin of victory of the season in an 88-56 win over Cal State Dominguez Hills Tuesday night.
The Titans improve to 5-1 marking their best start since 2006-07 when Fullerton finished the year with 20 victories. The contest was an exhibition game for Division II Cal State Dominguez Hills, as its record remains unchanged at 5-2.
"It was a good win," Cal State Fullerton Head Coach Dedrique Taylor said. "Whenever you win five in a row, it's always a good thing. So for us to be able to put five wins together like that is impressive for this ball club. It is a really good opportunity for us to continue to build momentum and confidence for ourselves."
Todd, a junior forward, led the scoring offense for Cal State Fullerton with a career-high 19 points. He led a quartet of Titans in double-figure scoring as he paced redshirt senior guard Lanerryl Johnson (16 points), freshman guard Ahmad (15 points) and redshirt senior guard Malcolm Brooks (10 points).
Ahmad shot 60-percent overall (6-of-10) and led the squad with a career-high 12 rebounds for his first collegiate double-double. He also added four assists and one steal.
"He's an impressive young man," Taylor said of the freshman from Centennial High School in Corona, Calif. "He's really starting to come into his own and understand what he can do to impact the game from multiple positions from the floor.
"One of the most impressive things about him right now is that he's impacted the game from a lot of different areas. We're working with him and excited about where he has a chance to go."
Another impact player in tonight's win, Todd, finished the game connecting on 7-of-8 field goals, 3-of-4 three-pointers and 2-of-3 free throws. He added five boards, two steals, one block and one assist.
"That was a game that had Rashard's name on it in terms of his ability to get out on the floor and knock down shots," Taylor said of the transfer from New Mexico Military Institute. "It was a good confidence builder for him to jump in there and find his niche. We can always use shooters and he can clearly shoot."
Thanks in part to Todd's and Ahmad's efforts, Cal State Fullerton out-shot Dominguez Hills 47.9-percent to 33.3-percent from the floor and 34.8-percent to 16.7-percent from beyond the arc. The Titans also led the Toros in rebounding (52-39), assists (19-11), blocks (6-4) and steals (6-4).
The Toros scored the first four points of the game, but Cal State Fullerton scored nine unanswered points and never looked back as the Titans held the lead for the remainder of the game.
In the first half, the Titans out-shot the Toros 43.6-percent (17-of-39) to 39.4-percent (13-of-33) from the field and the Fullerton defense was stout as it shut down Dominguez Hills from beyond the arc allowing just one trey on eight attempts.
Fullerton led by 13 points on several occasions in the half and eventually took a 15-point advantage (42-27) into the locker room at halftime.
The second half saw the Titans push their lead to as many as 37 (73-36) with 8:13 still remaining in the game. Cal State Fullerton shot a sizzling 53.1-percent from the field after connecting on 17-of-32 field goals.
While the Titans' offense soared, the defense kept the Toros off the board holding them to just 28.2-percent (11-of-39) shooting in the frame.
Cal State Fullerton posted 47 bench points to Dominguez Hills' 20 and the Titans held the edge on second chance points as they collected 15 to the Toros' 11.
After scoring 46 points in the second half and holding the Toros to just 29, Cal State Fullerton went on to win the game 88-56.
The Titans hit the road as they head to the state of Washington to take on Seattle on Friday, Dec. 4, at 7 p.m., inside Key Arena.