March 9, 2011

Titans Open with CSUN

March 9, 2011

Anaheim, Calif. -

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UPCOMING:
Thur., March 10 -- at Big West Conference Tournament, Honda Center (17,608), vs. Cal State Northridge, 8:30 p.m. (approx.)

IN A NUTSHELL: The No. 6-seeded Titans (11-19, 7-9) take a 2-game winning streak -- which equals the season's best -- into the tournament and a third meeting with No. 3-seeded Cal State Northridge, which won the first two contests -- 89-65 on Jan. 15 in Northridge and 70-68 in Titan Gym on Feb. 10. The winner advances to the semifinals Friday night which will be televised by ESPNU. The highest remaining seed will play the lowest remaining seed at 6:30 p.m. and the second game will follow.

TOURNEY HISTORY: This will be Fullerton's 33rd appearance in the 36th PCAA/Big West Tournament. The Titans failed to qualify in 1996, 2000 and 2002. They won the tourney in 1978 and 2008 and were runnersup in 1982 and 1985. The all-time tourney record is 22-30.

AUDIO: Most Titan games can be heard live on the internet. Listeners may access the CSF Athletics home page at www.fullertontitans.com and follow the links. Mike Martinez, Kevin Barbarino and Patrick Alog are the announcers.

VIDEO: All four first-round games -- UCI vs. Long Beach at noon; UCSB vs. UoP at 2:30 ish; UCR vs. Cal Poly at 6 p.m. -- will be available on subscription Big West TV. Visit www.bigwest.org for details.

PROBABLE STARTING LINEUP:
No. Name Ht. Yr. ppg a/rpg Quick Notes
G 3 Devon Peltier 5-11 Sr. 14.8 1.8r BWC Player of Week; averaging 23.5 ppg last 5 games; leads in FT% at .899
G 13 Isiah Umipig 6-1 Fr. 7.6 1.4r Big West 6th Man of Year; last 2 games-16 & 23 pts., shooting .636 (8-of-12 3's)
G 14 Orlando Brown 6-1 Jr. 4.1 2.9r Back-to-back outstandings efforts in losses to UCR and CSUN w/ 27 pts.
F 15 Orane Chin 6-7 Jr. 12.1 5.7r Only 5 points, 5 rebounds in two games vs. CSU Northridge
C 12 Jer'Vaughn Johnson 6-6 Sr. 14.5 7.0r Back-to-back double-doubles vs. Cal Poly (19 & 17) and UoP (16 & 12)

OFF THE BENCH:
F 0 Andre Hardy 6-6 Jr. 11.1 8.8r Selected Big West Newcomer of the Year; coming off bench last 2 games
G 11 Roger Guardia 6-4 Sr. 2.3 2.1r Season-high 14 pts. vs. USD, made all four 3-point attempts; started at UofA
G 21 Perry Webster 6-1 Jr. 7.9 5.2a Leads BWC in assists-to-turnover ratio at 2.65-to-1 and assists at 5.21 apg
G 32 Eric Williams 6-3 Sr. 1.5 1.0r Scored season-high 8 points in 11 minutes at UCSB; started at Idaho State
C 33 Sedric Martin 6-6 Jr. 2.5 1.5r Scored 13 points in first start of season at USC
F 45 Steve Jurich 6-7 Jr. 2.8 1.9r Got third start of season vs. Occidental

HOW YOU SAY IT: dee-VAHN pehl-tee-AY &\#149; Steve JUHR-itch &\#149; OHR-uhn Chin &\#149; Roger GWAHR-dee-uh &\#149; eye-ZAY-uh YOO-muh-pig

LAST GAME: The Titans won their second road game in three days but only their fourth of the season away from Titan Gym with an 87-82 decision Saturday at UC Davis. Isiah Umipig scored 20 points in the first half on his way to a season's high 23. Devon Peltier scored 25 points, 16 in the second half. The Titans made a season-high 12 3-point field goals in 27 tries.

THE COACH: Bob Burton is 134-111 in his eighth season at Cal State Fullerton and career. He has the most victories at the Div. I level and trails only Alex Omalev (139-176 in 12 years) all-time. Burton's winning percentage of .547 trails only Bobby Dye (.583, 109-78). He is 13-7 vs. Cal State Northridge including 3-1 in the post-season tournament.

ABOUT THE MATADORS: CSUN (13-17, 9-7) is coming off its inaugural win in Stockton, 58-54. Forward Lenny Daniel (16.3 ppg, 9.4 rpg) and guard Rashaun McLemore (15.1 ppg, 3.8 rpg) are the statistical leaders. In the two games vs. CSF earlier this season, Daniel had 29 points and 24 rebounds and McLemore had 20 points and 8 rebounds. CSUN made 18-of-41 3-pointers led by Josh Greene with 8-of-12 including the game winner with 24 seconds to play at Fullerton.

SERIES HISTORY: Fullerton leads the series, 35-28, but the Matadors won both meetings this year and have won 5 of the last 9. This will be the fifth meeting in the Big West Tournament. Northridge won a first-round game in 2004, 80-70, but Fullerton has won the last three meetings -- 73-63 in the first round in 2006; 83-68 in the semifinals in 2008; and 84-76 in the first round in 2010.

ROAD STRUGGLES: Under Bob Burton, the Titans had made dramatic strides as a road team before this year's 4-14 effort. They are 62-66 (.484) away from Titan Gym (includes 11-15 on neutral floors) from `04-05 to the present. For the previous 10 seasons (1994-95 thru 2003-04) the combined road record was 30-115 (.207). With a 3-11 mark in his first season (2003-04), Burton's total CSF road record is 65-77 (.458).

SECOND-HALF FADES: The Titans are only 8-5 after leading at the half and only two of those wins were "easy." On Dec. 4 vs. USD, the Titans led by 2 at the half and pulled away in the final 10 minutes. On Dec. 18, a 5-point lead over Occidental was expanded to 16 points 8 minutes into the second half. The other six brought on "nervous time."
&\#149; at USD on Nov. 1, the lead was 55-48 with about 7 minutes to play before USD had a 10-0 run to lead, only to eventually miss three shots in the paint to regain the lead in the final five seconds and then miss a trey at the buzzer to tie
&\#149; vs. Pacific on Dec. 30, the Titans led, 51-39 with 5:16 remaining only to go scoreless until Devon Peltier's tie-breaking, lucky bounce 3-pointer with 00.4 on the clock
&\#149; at UCR on Jan. 8, the lead was 73-68 with six seconds to go but UCR tied it on a 3-pointer and two foul shots stemming from a technical foul for a "sixth" timeout
&\#149; vs. Long Beach on Jan. 19, Fullerton saw all but 2 points of a 10-point lead disappear in the final 44 seconds
&\#149; vs. UC Irvine on Feb. 3, CSF saw all of a 10-point halftime edge disappear before beating UCI with a 17-11 finish
&\#149; at Pacific on Mar. 3, CSF saw all but one point of a 14-point halftime edge disappear before holding off Pacific, 82-80

The five losses after leading at the half:
&\#149; vs. Central Michigan on Nov. 12, a 4-point lead became a loss when the Chippewas hit a trey at the buzzer
&\#149; at Montana on Nov. 30, a 6-point lead fell to a 52-point second half for the Grizzlies
&\#149; at Portland State on Dec. 12, a 5-point lead swelled to 11 before the Vikings rallied to take the lead in the final minute
&\#149; at Cal Poly on Jan. 13, a 10-point lead grew to 12 before a 3-pointer-fueled rally by SLO, which took the lead for good with 1:28 to play
&\#149; vs. CSUN on Feb. 10, a 10-point lead grew to 14 before a 3-pointer-fueled rally by CSUN, which took the lead for good with 0:24 to go

Fullerton is 3-14 when trailing at the half, rallying only vs. Cal State Bakersfield (-8), at UC Riverside (-8) and at UC Davis (-1).

SECOND-HALF DEFENSIVE WOES: Titan opponents are averaging 33.6 points in the first half and 41.4 points in the second half. At Montana (52), at Portland State (51), vs. UC Davis (52), vs. Long Beach (54) and at Pacific (55) have been the biggest explosions. Only 6 times has an opponent scored fewer points in the second half than the first.

EVEN STEVEN STATS: Fullerton is shooting .370 from the 3-point line and so are its opponents. Fullerton is shooting .730 at the foul line and so are its opponents. Despite no player over 6-foot-7, the Titans are virtually even in rebounding at 33.4 per game to 33.7 by opponents. The Titans have slightly outshot their opponents from the floor -- .453 to .447 -- but have commited about one more turnover per game.

PLAYING THEM CLOSE: Seventeen of Fullerton's 30 games have been decided by two possessions -- 6 points or less. The Titans are 8-9 in those games, 4-4 in games decided by 3 or less.

TITAN PLAYER THUMBNAILS:
Orlando Brown - started at Pacific on Mar. 3 but had minimal stats in 10 minutes... but at UC Davis on Mar. 5 made all 4 shots for 9 points in 21 minutes... played his best two games of the season back-to-back in early February... had 11 points on 5-for-5 at the line and 2-for-3 at the arc and total FGs on Feb. 5 vs. UC Riverside... had season-high 16 points on 5-for-6 FGs and 3-for-4 at both arc and FT line on Feb. 10 vs. CSU Northridge... playing time had diminished with the arrivals of first Jer'Vaughn Johnson and later Andre Hardy... he played total of 42 minutes in back-to-back games vs. UoP and at UCI but only 25 minutes total over the next 4 games... started first 8 games of the season... twice has grabbed 9 boards in a game... usually guards opponents' top scoring threat... scored 11 points vs. Cal State Bakersfield on Nov. 27 and 10 in Bakersfield on Jan. 25... hit a big trey in the second half vs. Long Beach on Jan. 19.

Orane Chin - has had an up and down season... mostly down vs. CSUN, averaging 2.5 points and 2.5 rebounds... Big West Player of the Week (Jan. 17-23) for his efforts in wins vs. Long Beach State and UCSB but struggled following week on the road, averaging 3.5 points on 3-for-17 (.176) shooting in losses at Bakersfield and Long Beach... bounced back on Feb. 3 with double-double and pivotal 3-point play with 33 seconds to go vs. UCI but then was 2-for-8 FGs for only 8 points and 1 rebound vs. UCR on Feb. 5 and failed to score vs. CSUN on Feb. 10... was one rebound shy of a double-double in the win over the 49ers on Jan. 19 with 12 points and 9 rebounds... on Jan. 22 he led team with 18 points vs. UCSB, scoring 11 unanswered points late in the first half to erase an early UCSB advantage and his free throws at 3:15 put the Titans ahead to stay, 51-50... scored career-high 32 points at Portland State on 13-of-22 shooting (4 of 7 treys)... made the Rainbow Classic all-tournament team, averaging 22.7 ppg and 6.0 rpg.

Roger Guardia - has played only 7 minutes in last 11 games, all at Long Beach... after 6 scoreless games, scored 6 first-half points at Cal State Northridge on Jan. 15... he averaged 19 minutes over five games between Nov. 30 to Dec. 18 but has played a total of only 83 minutes in last 18 games... grabbed 9 rebounds at Montana and against USD had 14 points including 4-for-4 from 3-point line... started at Arizona.

Andre Hardy - selected Big West Newcomer of the Year... has come off bench last two games after 15 starts... averaged 9 points and 9 rebounds on last week's road trip... in conference games only ranks fifth in the Big West at 9.1 rpg... scored what proved to be the winning bucket vs. Long Beach State on Jan. 19 with layup for 88-82 lead with 13 seconds remaining... after a rusty first half vs. Montana on Dec. 22 (in first game action since March, 2009, in the NCAA Tournament for Oral Roberts due to transfer and ankle surgery), had 11 points and 8 rebounds after intermission to post only the third double-double (11 pts., 11 rebs.) by a Titan this season... almost did it again vs. UC Davis with team-high 19 points and 9 rebounds in a starting role and had 17 points and 9 boards vs. Pacific before being ejected for "fighting" with 2:57 to play... missed game at UCI but came back with second double-double (14 pts., 10 rebs.) at UCR on Jan. 8 and had a third with 12 points and 10 boards at Cal Poly on Jan. 13... just missed again with 12 points, 9 rebounds on Feb. 3 vs. UC Irvine... had fourth DoubleD with 19 points and 12 rebounds vs. CSUN on Feb. 10.

Jer'Vaughn Johnson - only returning starter from last year and has been most consistent Titan as a senior... honorable mention All-Big West for second time... has four double-doubles to share team lead with Andre Hardy... had a career-high 17-rebound game vs. Cal Poly with 19 points on Feb. 26 and had 12 boards with 16 points on Mar. 3 at Pacific.....strained knee ligament in early practice session; released to practice again on Nov. 18 and debuted with 13 minutes off the bench at USC on Nov. 24... ranks second in Big West to CSUN's Lenny Daniel (.583) in field-goal percentage at .545... went 6-for-7 at Bakersfield on Jan. 25... was 6-for-8 on Feb. 3 vs. UCI, 4-for-6 vs. UCR on Feb. 5 and 6-for-10 vs. CSUN on Feb. 10... had arguably best game of Titan career on Jan. 19 vs. Long Beach, one point and one rebound shy of his then-career highs with 22 points and 13 rebounds in 34 minutes against the athletic 49ers... made all 7 shots and all 5 free throws in 19-point game at Portland State before fouling out with 1:16 to play.

Steve Jurich - has not played in past 12 games and has played total of only 35 minutes vs. Big West competition... averaged 8 points and 2.5 rebounds in two starts in Hawai'i before back problem sidelined him... came off the bench at San Diego and played 21 minutes with 5 points and 5 rebounds... had season-high 7 rebounds at Montana.

Sedric Martin - had 8 points in 7 minutes of play at Long Beach State on Jan. 29... had season-high 5 rebounds in 11 minutes at UC Irvine on Jan. 5 after not playing at all in two previous games... got 5 more boards at Cal Poly on Jan. 13... got first start at USC and made 6-of-9 shots against the Trojans' twin 6-10 towers and scored 13 points... hit two free throws at 3:39 to tie Hawai'i game at 70-70.

Devon Peltier - reigning Big West Player of the Week... has put up Josh Akognon-like numbers the past 5 games, averaging 25.6 points on 36-of-66 (.545) shooting including 24-of-45 (.533) treys... had career-high 32 points at Idaho State on Feb. 19... vs. Cal Poly on Feb. 26 had 19 second-half points after scoreless first half... in less than two seasons has moved into sixth place on Titan career 3-point field goal list at 148... is No. 8 in attempts at 356... failed to start (discipline) for only time this season vs. CSUN on Feb. 10... leads Big West in free-throw percentage at .89899, which would rank 5th in BWC history behind No. 4 Akognon (.89916)... current career mark of .871 (128-of-147) would rank No. 4 in Big West and No. 2 in CSF history (Akognon .895)... began week No. 12 in the nation... 49-for-53 (.925) at the line in Big West play... hit game-winning trey in final second to beat Pacific on Dec. 30... led the Titans with 15 points at USC and 20 at Montana and in between was most of the Titans' offense in the second half at San Diego, scoring 14 of his career and game-high 24 points... led team with 19 at Arizona, making 4 of 6 treys.

Isiah Umipig - selected Big West Conference 6th Player of the Year... a statistical quirk: scoring bursts come in back-to-back games.. has scored in double figures 10 times this season and all have come in five 2-game spurts spaced evenly throughout the season... coming off the best of the bunch last week with 16 points and season-high 23 points at Pacific and UC Davis, respectively... made 14 of 25 FGs including 8 of 12 treys... other big back-to-back games: vs. Long Beach on Jan. 29 (12 points on 5-for-10 FGs) and vs. UCI on Feb. 3 (19 points on 6-for-11 FGs)... also at UCI on Jan. 5 -- 16 points in final 6 minutes for season-high 19 points (5-of-5 FGs, 5-of-5 FTs) -- and at UCR on Jan. 8 scoring 19 again in starting role... in game at Davis on Mar. 5 scored 20 points in the first half on perfect shooting -- 7-of-7 FGs, 4-of-4 treys and 2-of-2 FTs.

Perry Webster - leads Big West in assist-to-turnover ratio at 2.65 to 1.0 (151 to 57) and assists at 5.21 per game... in last five games (4 off bench) has 29 assists and only 5 turnovers... previous four games had 11 assists and 17 turnovers... led team with 15 points on Feb. 5 vs. UCR including back-to-back treys 24 seconds apart for 52-44 lead at 13:19... clutch down the stretch at home vs. Long Beach and UCSB, scoring 7 points in 9-4 CSF run that produced 83-74 lead at 0:55 vs. the 49ers and hitting trey to beat the shot clock for 58-50 lead over UCSB at 0:35... after scoreless game at USC came back for season-high 17 points vs. Cal State Bakersfield and matched that vs. Occidental... matched it again -- all in the second half -- at CSUN on Jan. 15... had 10 assists in double-double with 10 points at Portland State... scored only 5 points at San Diego but they turned a 58-55 deficit into a 60-58 lead on back-to-back possessions (2 free throws and a trey around his steal).

Eric Williams - had not played in previous 5 games but came off bench in first half on Feb. 16 at UCSB and finished with season-high 8 points in 11 minutes on 3-for-4 shooting... that effort earned him starts at Idaho State and vs. Cal Poly... played solid 19 minutes on Jan. 8 in win at UC Riverside and made big trey in second half vs. Long Beach State on Jan. 19... got 5 points at CSUN on Jan. 15... last season beat Northridge (113-112) with 3-point play with 3.2 seconds left in third overtime.