Men's Basketball - bigwest.org
Men's Basketball

Long Beach State Looks To Extend Walter Pyramid Win Streak

Files associated with this release:
Men's Basketball Release No. 10

1/9/2012

Long Beach State takes a 15-game winning streak in the Walter Pyramid into this week's games against UC Davis and Pacific.  The Big West's television package with Fox Sports Net begins on Saturday at 4:00 p.m. with Pacific and Long Beach State.  Prime Ticket will carry all the action.

NOTEWORTHY

KEEP AN EYE ON

Josh Greene, Cal State Northridge

Greene is one of only two Matadors that is averaging double-digit points per game this season.  The sophomore ranks second on the team with 10.7 points per game, helped by the fact that he has scored in double figures in five of the last six contests.  After a slow start in which he combined for 15 points through the first three games, Greene’s production has picked up drastically.  He has reached double figures in points in eight of the previous 10 contests.  In his last outing against preseason favorite Long Beach State, Greene tallied a team-high 15 points.  He also drew the defensive assignment of the Big West No. 2 leading scorer, Casper Ware, and held Ware to his third-lowest total of the season with 12 points.

MORE NOTABLES

49ers, Gauchos Off To Early Lead In Big West Race

Through one full week of Big West play, the standings do not hold any surprises at the top.  Defending regular season champion and favorite Long Beach State posted a 3-0 record to vault into first place.  The 49ers notched road victories against UC Irvine and Cal State Northridge sandwiched around a home win versus Cal Poly to secure the solid start.  It is the second straight season that LBSU has began 3-0.  In 2010-11, the 49ers broke out to a 6-0 mark in league play before suffering their first setback.

UC Santa Barbara joins LBSU atop the standings after dispatching Cal Poly on the road and Cal State Fullerton at home last week.  It is an auspicious start for a Gaucho program which had dropped three consecutive league openers before coming through with a narrow 58-57 win against the rival Mustangs last Monday.  UCSB also snapped out some recent doldrums in which it had lost three straight and five of of the last six games.

The surprise in the early going of Big West play is UC Irvine.  Picked to finish last in the preseason media poll, the Anteaters stand in third place with a 3-1 record.  More impressively though is the fact that all three league wins have come on the road.  UCI plays five of its next six conference opponents in the Bren Center, giving it a chance to factor in the race.

The Road Is Kind, So Far
Home court advantage is nothing but a myth, at least sayeth the standings to this point.  The road team has compiled a 9-5 record in league games.  UC Irvine (3-0), UC Riverside (2-0), Long Beach State (2-0), UC Santa Barbara (1-0) and Cal State Northridge (1-0) have registered all-important road victories.

The Anteaters toppled Pacific and UC Davis last week to record their first Big West road sweep in six years.  UCI swept UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly in January of 2006.  The 2005-06 season also marked the last time UCI won its first three Big West road games.  UCI actually went on to start out 5-0 in conference road matchups that year before falling.  UCI has erased some of the frustration of going 0-6 in non-conference road competition.

UC Riverside overcame a setback in its home opener to Cal State Northridge to thwart both UC Davis and Pacific on the road.  It was the third and fourth road wins for the Highlanders, who evened their record at 8-8 and clinched their second-highest win total through 16 games since making the transition to Division I 11 years ago.  The Highlanders also got their first road win over the Aggies since elevating to Division I, and downed the Tigers for only the second time ever on the road.

For future comparison, Big West road teams finished with a 30-42 record during conference play last season.

Big West Television Package Begins Saturday
The first of eight Big West basketball telecasts on Fox Sports Net will take place this Saturday when Pacific travels to Long Beach State for a 4:00 p.m. tip in the Walter Pyramid.  Prime Ticket will carry all of the action.  The package continues on Saturday, Jan. 21 as Cal Poly hosts Cal State Northridge.  The conference package with television partner ESPN also begins on Jan. 21 with a much anticipated showdown between Long Beach State and UC Santa Barbara at The Thunderdome on ESPNU.

UC Davis, Pacific Brace For Walter Pyramid

Long Beach State, winners of 15 straight games in the Walter Pyramid, returns home to face UC Davis and Pacific this week with hopes of extending the streak.  The 49ers are 5-0 on their home court this season, and won 10 straight at home to close out the 2010-11 campaign.  LBSU’s last loss in the Walter Pyramid occurred on Nov. 27, 2010 to Loyola Marymount.  Meanwhile, the Aggies and Tigers are both 0-7 on the road this season and look to extinguish some streaks of their own.  UCD is in the midst of an 11-game slide while Pacific has dropped seven straight.

Long Beach State’s Robinson Now No. 2 In Rebounds
Two more down.  One more to go.  Long Beach State senior T.J. Robinson moved past two more players into the No. 2 in Big West career rebounding history after corralling 35 boards over three games last week.  He leapfrogged Utah State’s Greg Grant (1,003, 1983-86) and UNLV’s Stacey Augmon (1,005, 1988-91) to pull within less than 100 rebounds of the all-time record.  Tony Neal (1981-85) of Cal State Fullerton is the record holder with 1,115 rebounds.  Robinson, who has 1,024 career caroms, is averaging a Big West leading 10.2 rebounds per game this season.  Just last week, Robinson joined Neal, Augmon and Grant as the only four players in Big West history to compile 1,000 career points and rebounds.

BIG WEST CAREER REBOUNDS
Rk.    Player, School    Yrs.    No.
1.    Tony Neal, Cal State Fullerton    1981-85    1,115
2.    T.J. Robinson, Long Beach State    2008-pres.    1,024
3.    Stacey Augmon, UNLV    1988-91    1,005
4.    Greg Grant, Utah State    1983-86    1,003
5.    Ron Cornelius, Pacific    1978-81    973

Titans Capture Home Court Win No. 300
Cal State Fullerton posted the 300th win in Titan Gym history with a 78-73 triumph versus Pacific last Monday.  The Titans improved to 300-168 all-time in the facility since moving to Division I in 1974-75.  However, the Titans saw their seven-game winning streak go by the wayside in a 77-64 loss on Thursday in Santa Barbara.  The streak was the longest for the Titans in 21 years – the 1990-91 team won eight in a row at one point.

Williams Reaches Milestone With Win
UC Santa Barbara head coach Bob Williams became the school’s all-time winningest coach when his Gauchos upended rival Cal Poly, 58-57, on Monday thanks to a game-winning three-pointer from senior Orlando Johnson.  Williams claimed win No. 223 to surpass Jerry Pimm for the top spot.  Pimm compiled a 222-102 mark in 15 seasons at UCSB.  Williams, in his 14th season as the Gaucho mentor, moved to 224-175 after his team won again on Thursday, a 13-point triumph over Cal State Fullerton. 

Career Night For Eversley
Cal Poly got a big offensive contribution from transfer Chris Eversley on a night when the Mustangs could not afford to start out Big West play 0-3.  After falling to UC Santa Barbara and Long Beach State in closely played battles, the Mustangs rolled to a 73-67 victory over Cal State Fullerton behind Eversley’s career highs in points (18), rebounds (9) and minutes (24).  He helped Cal Poly score more than 70 points for just the second time in the last nine games.