Nov. 16, 2013
By: Andrew Rich
By: Andrew Rich
FRESNO, Calif. -- Returning to a packed Save Mart Center on Saturday night proved to be the perfect remedy coming off of a tough loss to Pittsburgh of the Atlantic Coast Conference. Playing in front of 14,777 fans, the fourth-largest crowd in Save Mart Center history, the Bulldogs led for all 40 minutes on their way to a 80-64 win over Cal State Northridge (1-2).
"We're getting better," Fresno State head coach Rodney Terry said. "We are really making tremendous strides on both sides of the ball and guys are showing lots of grit."
Fresno State (2-1) was led by Tyler Johnson's double-double. The senior finished with 18 points and a career-high 12 rebounds. He poured in 16 of his 18 in the first half.
Leading 27-25 with a little under four and a half minutes to play in the first half, the Bulldogs rattled off a 14-2 run going into halftime to extend their lead to 41-27. The run was fueled by three Matador turnovers that led directly to Fresno State fast break buckets.
Coming out of halftime, Northridge's leading scorer Josh Greene scored the first five points to pull the Matadors within nine. But, that was the closest they would get in the second half.
The `Dogs would eventually extend their lead to a game-high 22 points with 4:02 to play on a Karachi Edo lay-up. Edo, making his first career start, finished with 10 points.
Marvelle Harris and Cezar Guerrero just missed joining Johnson in the double-double club. Harris finished with 12 points and nine rebounds and Guerrero ended the night with 10 points and nine assists. The nine assists were a career-high for the sophomore point guard from Huntington Park, Calif.
Paul Watson, who came in as Fresno State's leading scorer at 18 points a game, finished with 13. The freshman also pulled down a career-high six rebounds. Senior Allen Huddleston winded up with 10 points, to give the Bulldogs six players in double figures on the night. It was the first time the Bulldogs finished with six players in double figures since a 2006 game against South Alabama.
"We have a number of guys that can score the basketball on our team," Terry said. "I thought our guys were being very unselfish in terms of sharing the ball tonight."
Fresno State returns to the Save Mart Center on Wednesday night to take on their third Big West Conference opponent of the young season. The Bulldogs will welcome in Cal Poly for the 7 p.m. tip. Last year in San Luis Obispo, Fresno State knocked off the Mustangs 76-67.
"Catch the Wave" - 2013-14 Fresno State men's basketball season tickets are now on sale and can be ordered online at www.gobulldogs.com or over the phone at 559-278-DOGS (3647). The official home of the Fresno State Bulldogs is 940 AM ESPN Radio.
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