In their final road game of the season, Cal State Fullerton men’s basketball team fell to UC Davis 66-59 Saturday night. The loss ended a four-game win streak against the Aggies and was the Titans’ second loss in their last three games.
Turnovers proved to be the deciding factor in the game, as the Titans gave the ball up 17 times, compared to the Aggies’ nine. UC Davis was able to turn the giveaways into points, as they outscored CSUF 20-2 in points off of turnovers. CSUF (14-15, 11-5) is 2-6 when they give up at least 16 turnovers in a game.
The Feb. 11 Big West Player of the Week TJ Shorts II led the way for UC Davis (11-17, 7-7), leading the Aggies in points (18), rebounds (8) and assists (5). Two other Aggie starters also scored in double figures.
While Shorts II did not have the best shooting night, going only 2-for-7 from the field, the senior guard did his damage from the free throw line, making 14 of his 18 attempts from the line.
CSUF guard Khalil Ahmad had 18 points, the team high for the Titans.
Forward Jackson Rowe led in rebounds for the Titans with 11. Rowe has led the Titans in rebounds in the past 12 games.
Senior guard Kyle Allman Jr., who tallied 17 points, made CSUF history Saturday night, as he passed Gary Davis for the most games played in men’s basketball history at 122.
The night started off rough for CSUF, as they missed their first six shots, and did not score until Wayne Arnold 3-pointer over six minutes into the game. Arnold’s shot began a 14-5 run for the Titans and gave them a three-point lead.
The remainder of the first half was back-and-forth, with the Aggies leading 27-25. Despite being down two points, the Titans shot better than UC Davis, making 38.5 percent of their shots, compared the the Aggies’ 31 percent.
The teams continued to trade baskets at the beginning of the second half but after four minutes of play, UC Davis went on a 12-2 run, giving them a 10-point lead and their largest of the game.
The Titans played catch-up for the rest of the game, getting the deficit down to as much as four points with under two minutes left, and were down by two with 59 seconds left to go after a pair of made free throws by Allman Jr.
However, Shorts II made a clutch jump shot and sank two free throws to extend UC Davis’ lead.
Cal State Fullerton will close out their regular season with their senior night on Saturday against Hawai’i. With a win against the Rainbow Warriors, the Titans can secure the second seed in the Big West Tournament, which begins next Thursday.